SeQual Technologies Announces Beta Test Results for Eclipse Portable Oxygen System

SAN DIEGO — SeQual Technologies Inc., which develops oxygen systems, released the results of the first round of beta testing on its Eclipse™ Oxygen System. Developed over five years at a cost of $12 million, the concentrator for home oxygen patients offers both pulse and continuous flow to serve both stationary and ambulatory needs.

Jim Bixby, SeQual CEO, said the beta results exceeded expectations and also provided crucial data that will enable SeQual to continue improving the Eclipse for additional beta testing followed by commercial release to select providers.

"Every user we interviewed appreciated the versatility of the Eclipse," said Bixby. "It's about quality of life for many." SeQual's Eclipse is the first and only all-in-one concentrator, providing the full capabilities of a home concentrator in a single, lightweight, battery-powered package. "The Eclipse makes it easy to move around town or even around the world, without worrying about running out of oxygen," said Bixby.

Prior to the Eclipse, many oxygen patients needed two devices: a large, stationary device to provide the continuous flow needed while sleeping, and a lighter portable device capable of providing only pulse flow.

SeQual worked with providers in four cities to provide the beta units to patients for a month of testing. Users praised the sleek design and portability, plus the fact that it provided new peace of mind when they traveled.

"It's a wonderful thing for those of us who like to travel. It allowed me to think about going places I couldn't go before," said Bonnie Gray, Sacramento, Calif.

Other beta users noted the easier movement and quieter operation of the system compared with conventional systems.

Several suggestions from beta testers are already being implemented in subsequent generations of the device, noted Bixby. He said the ideas included providing two different carts to carry the device: a standard cart and a cart with larger wheels for rougher terrain, and making adjustments to the built-in apnea alarm system.

"I think the Eclipse will change how oxygen therapy is delivered to patients," said Dianne Abbot, director at Barnes Jewish Christian Home Care. "It will put mobility back into people's lives where, previously, they were constrained by oxygen tanks. The Eclipse is quiet, does not have a medical equipment look to it and makes use at the grocery store simple. This is definitely a therapy that has been long overdue."

Bixby said the next round of beta testing is being conducted in 20 cites in the United States. He anticipated completion before summer, followed by official product introduction through select providers around the country.

For more information, see www.sequal.com.

This article originally appeared in the April 2006 issue of HME Business.

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