Healthcare Industry News: vascular access
News Release - January 8, 2008
Medicare Legislation Extends Current Reimbursement of Brachytherapy SeedsTheragenics Supports Efforts to Work with Congress in Protecting Access to Prostate Cancer Brachytherapy
BUFORD, Ga.--(HSMN NewsFeed)--Theragenics Corporation® (NYSE: TGX ), a medical device company serving the cancer treatment and surgical products markets, announced today that Congress recently enacted the Medicare, Medicaid and SCHIP Extension Act of 2007, extending the Medicare safeguards initially enacted by Congress in 2003 for brachytherapy seeds administered in the hospital outpatient setting. The new legislation includes an extension of the current reimbursement policies for brachytherapy seeds through June 30, 2008, ensuring that the Medicare program does not implement potentially restrictive caps on reimbursement during that period. The President signed the legislation on December 29, 2007.
“This legislation extends the protection of reimbursement for seeds,” stated M. Christine Jacobs, Chairman and CEO of Theragenics, the manufacturer and marketer of the TheraSeed® and I-Seed brachytherapy devices. “Prostate cancer patients deserve access to all treatment options. Brachytherapy continues to provide cure rates that equal or exceed those achieved with other treatments, while at the same time carries a lower risk of complications such as impotence and urinary incontinence.”
As the Company has previously disclosed, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”) had issued a rule that would have fixed the per seed reimbursement rate to hospitals effective January 1, 2008. The Company believes that this rule would have led to increased pricing pressure from hospitals. The Medicare, Medicaid and SCHIP Extension Act of 2007 postpones the implementation of fixed per seed rates until July 1, 2008. Theragenics supported and worked closely with the Coalition for the Advancement of Brachytherapy, an advocacy group comprised of industry representatives and clinicians, in working with members of Congress and other policymakers to secure this extension.
Ms. Jacobs concluded, “Our TheraSeed® product has been used to treat over 120,000 men, and we have seen first hand the difference this treatment makes. Adequate reimbursement will support the long term viability of this valuable treatment.”
Theragenics Corporation (NYSE: TGX ) operates two business segments: its brachytherapy seed business and its surgical products business. The brachytherapy business manufactures and markets its premier product, the palladium-103 TheraSeed® device (www.theraseed.com) and I-Seed, an iodine-125 based device, which are used primarily in the minimally invasive treatment of localized prostate cancer. Its surgical products business (www.cpmedical.com and www.galtmedical.com) manufactures and distributes wound closure and vascular access products. Wound closure products include sutures, needles and other surgical products with applications in, among other areas, urology, veterinary, cardiology, orthopedics, plastic surgery and dental. vascular access includes introducers and guidewires used in the interventional radiology, interventional cardiology and vascular surgery markets. For additional information, call Theragenics’ Investor Relations Department at (800) 998-8479 or visit www.theragenics.com.
This release contains forward looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, the accuracy of which are necessarily subject to risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, the anticipated impact of the Medicare, Medicaid and SCHIP Extension Act of 2007 and anticipated positive results in general. Actual results may be affected by among other things, implementation of the new legislation by CMS, effectiveness and execution of marketing and sales programs by Theragenics and its distributors, changes in product pricing by Theragenics or other brachytherapy seed producers, continued acceptance of the products by the market, continued demand for Pd-103, introduction and/or availability of competitive products by others, potential future changes affecting Medicare or other third-party reimbursement, and other factors set forth from time to time in the Company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings.
All forward looking statements and cautionary statements included in this document are made as of the date hereby based on information available to the Company as of the date hereof, and the Company assumes no obligation to update any forward looking statement or cautionary statement.
Issuer of this News Release is solely responsible for its
Please address inquiries directly to the issuing company.