ResMed and Fisher & Paykel Settle Patent Dispute: Sleep product manufacturers ResMed, San Diego, and Fisher & Paykel, Auckland, New Zealand, have settled a patent-infringement lawsuit that ResMed filed Aug. 26, 2002. Under the terms of the settlement, Fisher & Paykel agreed to introduce a new design for the company's Aclaim mask by Aug. 1, 2003. Until then, Fisher & Paykel may continue to sell its existing Aclaim mask with ResMed's approval. The companies did not disclose the remaining conditions of the settlement.

In other ResMed news, the company last month signed an agreement with Guidant — a manufacturer of medical devices for cardiovascular disease — whereby ResMed and Guidant will collaborate on research and development projects, co-market to each other's customers, and work together to educate physicians and patients.

Roche Expands Headquarters: Roche Diagnostics April 17 announced plans to invest more than $135 million in the company's Indianapolis operations. Under the expansion plan, Roche will create approximately 600 new jobs in the areas of research and development, laboratory functions, manufacturing, distribution, information technology and corporate operations. Roche's optimism about the growth potential of its five diagnostics business areas, which include diabetes care, is fueling the expansion plan.

BD to Discontinue Sharps Sales: Becton Dickinson of Franklin Lakes, N.J., April 16 announced plans to discontinue U.S. sales of conventional needles and other “sharps” devices. The plan coincided with the second anniversary of the Federal Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act. “Based on [progress with safety-engineered sharps devices], BD now is able to discontinue the sale of many conventional sharps devices without disrupting patients' care or clinical practice,” said Edward Ludwig, BD's chairman, president and chief executive officer.

Respironics Appoints New Executives: Respironics has appointed James Ice director of organizational development and Ron Billingsley government relations manager. Each has more than 20 years of experience — Ice in the field of organizational development and Billingsley in the HME industry.


Trac Signs Five HME Customers for E-CMN System: Trac Medical Solutions, a subsidiary of AuthentiDate Holding, has signed five new deals for its CareCert Internet-based medical-forms processing technology, which is designed to streamline the process for filling out and submitting certificates of medical necessity. The home medical equipment suppliers that have signed contracts are Neighborcare, Annapolis Junction, Md.; Promptcare, Clark, N.J.; Patients First Pulmonary, Villa Park, Ill.; Shuman Health Care, Waycross, Ga.; and Total Home Health, Elgin, Ill.

Lifestyle Mobility Announces Operating Agreement: Lifestyle Mobility, Seminole, Fla., and Scooter Lift Mfg., Medford, Ore., have announced an agreement under which Scooter Lift's warehouse will be the new West Coast distribution center for Lifestyle Mobility, and Lifestyle's warehouse will be the new East Coast distribution center for Scooter Lift. Each company will serve as an extension of the other's current sales force. Scooter Lift has changed its name to Silver Star Mobility.

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