October 3, 2023
ReWalk Robotics Ltd. (NASDAQ:RWLK) and its new acquisition Alter G are technologies that permit stroke, accident and warfare victims new hope for regaining mobility.
Larry Jasinski has served as Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the ReWalk Robotics Ltd. board since February 2012.
From 2005 until 2012, Mr. Jasinski served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Soteira, Inc., a company engaged in development and commercialization of products used to treat individuals with vertebral compression fractures, which was acquired by Globus Medical in 2012.
From 2001 to 2005, Mr. Jasinski was President and Chief Executive Officer of Cortek, Inc., a company that developed next-generation treatments for degenerative disc disease, which was acquired by Alphatec in 2005.
From 1985 until 2001, Mr. Jasinski served in multiple sales, research and development, and general management roles at Boston Scientific Corporation.
Mr. Jasinski holds a B.Sc. in marketing from Providence College and an MBA from the University of Bridgeport.
“ReWalk has been primarily focused on exoskeletons that allow paralyzed individuals an ability to walk once again. And most of our strategic focus has been built around gaining CMS reimbursement, because 56% of that population relies on Medicare. So our mission has been really driven around that one product.
Part of our longer-term growth goals was to use some of the cash we had and the structure in which we worked to add additional product lines, to help us on the pathway to profitability. And so the combination of where our focus has been from a technology point of view, expanding to adding more product lines, to have the company profitable on its current cash balance.”
ReWalk Robotics Ltd. (NASDAQ:RWLK) CEO explains the acquisition of Alter G.
“First, for the reason that we are focused initially on the clinics where our patients get trained and AlterG is highly active in the U.S. marketplace with products in over 4,000 clinics worldwide. But importantly, almost all the clinics where we would sell the ReWalk have AlterG.
So there’s an immediate synergy of the companies where they have relationships in places where we want to be able to expand the exoskeleton presence once we have CMS payment.
So that’s the excellent part of the fit at a high level because we need those doctors to write prescriptions once they believe this can be paid for.
But parallel and equally important to us is that they brought a very innovative nominal technology that’s heavily used in the clinics.”
ReWalk Robotics Ltd. (NASDAQ:RWLK) has recently gained new US government reimbursement support.
“It is probably the most significant thing that’s happened, will ever happen to this industry other than the creation of the product.
The whole challenge with this market has been lack of access.
So, we had plenty of people or doctors that would like to prescribe for someone to be able to walk once again.
But it’s a population that generally didn’t have the means to get the equipment and use it on a day-to-day basis.
Specifically with CMS, we spent many years building up our database.
When we first gained our FDA clearance, we had less than about 10 papers.
In the citations that have developed from all those smaller studies and two randomized studies over the years, we have 117 citations in a lot of what was provided to CMS.
The steps at CMS are important.
We went through a public hearing process and did have a code created for the category of exoskeletons for the industry.
Once that code is created, it then needs a benefit category in which to be paid, and pricing.
The major development on that occurred in June of this year when a proposed rule was published by CMS.
It is currently in a 60-day comment period, which is just coming to its conclusion — August 29 is day 60.
Then they will issue a final rule based on the comments they gained in that period.
That will issue approximately in November.
In parallel, the pricing will begin moving along as a part of the process with a pricing proposal at the next HCPCS meeting, which we think will also be in November or so — pricing that may go through a public comment period — and then we can finalize pricing early next year.
So the rule will take effect in January, the pricing will be very close to that.
In parallel, we have already started submitting patients’ claims.
So we put 11 in in June; we’re going to put in about 35 this year.
And so, we are at the beginning stage of all these patients who lacked access having the ability to stand and walk once again.
So the progress in CMS has been our number one focus and we’ve hit a major milestone so far.
The next one is this rule, pricing, and the first units being paid for…
Germany is still our strongest market.
That will be eclipsed rather quickly by the United States just by virtue of the size of the two markets.
And our primary focus today has been the United States and Germany. They’re sizable markets.
They will have a method to pay in the United States hopefully soon and the Germans are now covering it.
The other element in the United States is the VA does pay for it.
So we do have one vehicle here.
Outside of that, we have spotty coverage.
We see some other countries starting to follow the German lead in Northern Europe.
But generally, the sales outside the two major direct markets for us are either by individuals that self-pay or that find other means to pay.
So in the future, hopefully some of these other countries will adopt the policies that the German and American governments are heading towards…
The device has a list price of $186,000.”
ReWalk Robotics Ltd. (NASDAQ:RWLK) CEO Larry Jasinski emphasizes that patient outcome drives his business forward.
:…The changes in patients’ lives are as dramatic as ever.
When a person could stand up and stand with their spouse or children for the first time and walk with them again, it’s life changing.
And that hasn’t changed in any manner or measurement with what we’ve gotten.
And it’s something to really pay attention to why we believe we’re getting coverage for this product, it’s because it is life changing and of great benefit.
It’s just taking the time to work through these systems that we’re pretty much on track — it just seems like it’s been a long time.”
Get the complete picture by reading the entire interview with ReWalk Robotics Ltd. (NASDAQ:RWLK) CEO Larry Jasinski, exclusively in the Wall Street Transcript.
Larry Jasinski, CEO, ReWalk Robotics Ltd.
Marlborough, MA 01752