The Wound Care Learning Network had the opportunity to speak with Peter Mason, president of ExtriCARE.
As the president of ExtriCARE USA, a national medical device distribution company specializing in negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT), can you provide a brief overview of what the main objectives of the company are?
Our company’s overall objective is to help this powerful therapy reach its full potential to heal more wounds and improve people’s quality of life. We will accomplish this by providing innovative NPWT products that improve and streamline the experience for clinicians and patients, which will increase utilization. If we can offer products that allow clinicians to be more efficient, they in turn will have more time to focus on what is most important—their patients. There are many layers to make this a reality. Right now, we are focused on building a network of forward-thinking partners and dealers that understand what it takes and will help us accomplish these goals.
In 2012, you were first introduced to NPWT while working at a medical manufacturer that aimed to provide effective treatment therapies for patients with lymphedema, chronic wounds, and other conditions. Since your initial introduction to NPWT, how far has it come in the past eight years in your eyes?
Over the last eight years, NPWT has mainly improved in two facets: the increase of use and the development of case studies and educational resources. There has also been innovation with single use NPWT (sNPWT). Although NPWT has been limited due to a variety of factors, the potential for growth and increased utilization is substantial.
You have described the market for NPWT as being in its infancy. What might the future of the NPWT marketplace look like? Where might we see promising developments in its evolution in the wound care space?
The reason I believe NPWT is in its infancy is based on the potential utilization versus current utilization, which is untapped compared to what it could be. Over the last 10 years, NPWT has evolved and started shifting. Traditionally, NPWT has been a reactive therapy mostly utilized on very difficult or non-healing wounds. It was used as more of a last resort for patients. This perception is changing. I firmly believe NPWT benefits can be adapted to all wounds and be utilized as a preventive solution. NPWT can be more proactive than reactive. There are many benefits to this shift, which include a lowering in overall wound care cost, an increase in wound protection and most importantly, a reduction in healing time.
With more than a decade of experience in strategic business development and sales, you plan to expand the ExtriCARE product line with cost-effective options to transform NPWT. Can you elaborate on the new hybrid solution, a cross between single-use and traditional NPWT, that the company is working on?
ExtriCARE USA’s hybrid NPWT (hNPWT) technology adapts to a wider range of situations. Currently, clinicians are healing wounds but they could greatly benefit from a simpler and more adaptive solution. Traditional NPWT is very beneficial but can be time consuming and cumbersome. Single use NPWT (sNPWT) has many benefits but is limited to small or incisional wounds. Our hybrid product offering will provide clinicians a simple solution to adapt to a given wound more efficiently. We are excited to roll out hNPWT products in 2021 that are designed to be flexible so clinicians and patients have better experiences and results.
ExtriCARE is approaching its one-year anniversary come January 2021. How has the pandemic impacted the initial goals and trajectory of the company? How have you defined success as an emerging business in a global pandemic, and what is the next accomplishment the company hopes to achieve?
Like many, the pandemic has impacted our company significantly. It has presented new challenges, but also new opportunities for us to pivot and be resourceful. The pandemic has shed more light on the importance of NPWT education. It’s given us time to learn more about the needs of our medical supply distributors. Due to restrictions our distributors have faced with in-person training at facilities and time constraints, the ease of use of our products and reliable order fulfillment has helped reduce the pandemic’s impact on them.
ExtriCARE USA provides a NPWT system that is easier and less time consuming so more attention can be focused on the patients in need of NPWT. We are bringing additional products that will help cut the time it takes to apply a dressing as well, and we can elaborate on that in the near future.
Our team is excited to launch new products that will help shape and transform the future of NPWT. Success to us is focused on how we are improving, learning and adapting. We are focused on building strong relationships and successful partnerships for the long term. The key is our network and the trust we are building with this network.
In April 2020, ExtriCARE USA partnered with Alleva Medical to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) to frontline responders. What impact did this opportunity have during the initial wave of the pandemic? Do you believe the current wave, which is deadlier than in spring, will have negative repercussions for patients’ access to wound care treatments and therapies, such as NPWT?
Delivering PPE to frontline responders during the shortage supply in the initial wave felt like a duty. So many amazing workers stepped up during this chaotic time and I hope our PPE played a small part in helping keep them safe. I am proud of how my team and Alleva Medical collaborated to be solution-oriented and solve logistical problems efficiently to deliver PPE quickly. In regard to NPWT, we will go above and beyond to ensure our clients have the supplies they need so that patients who need them can get them. We have a lot of work to do and we all need to do our part. I know our frontline workers are doing everything they can to give the best care to our patient population.
One can argue that medical treatments and care can only go so far without proactive education. How is education vital for positive results with patients? How was the company’s website created with the user in mind?
Education is very important to ensure positive results with patients. Our goal is to ensure patients heal as quickly as possible, and in order to achieve that, there needs to be more emphasis on NPWT education. Our team has a boundless drive to help provide more product educational resources for our dealers and clinicians so that they can be efficient when using our products to help their patients.
We recently launched a refreshed website that is simple to navigate with information on the ExtriCARE product line, the leadership team and press page with our company’s latest insights. Our website was built to make it easier for visitors to browse which offerings will help them achieve their needs. The goal of our site redesign is to make ExtriCARE USA’s products and resources more accessible for current and future clients.