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VisionCare Ophthalmic Technologies Secures Up To $15MM To Accelerate Growth Of Its Novel Treatment For Age-Related Macular Degeneration

SARATOGA, Calif., Sept. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- VisionCare Ophthalmic Technologies, Inc. ("VisionCare"), the developer, manufacturer and marketer of the Implantable Miniature Telescope ("IMT" by Dr. Isaac Lipshitz), the only FDA-approved surgical device for end-stage Age-Related Macular Degeneration ("AMD"), announced that it has secured up to $15 Million in long-term, non-dilutive financing to accelerate the commercialization of its novel therapy.  The capital was raised exclusively from Life Sciences Alternative Funding LLC ("LSAF"), a leading provider of non-dilutive, debt capital to fund growth for commercial-stage medical device and other life sciences companies.  

VisionCare's telescope implant was approved by the FDA in 2010 based on a multi-center, prospective clinical trial with more than five years of follow-up data.  VisionCare began to commercialize the first-of-kind device in 2011 via its CentraSight® treatment program and received a new CPT® code* for the implant from the American Medical Association (AMA) in July 2012.  In July 2013, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed to provide permanent reimbursement for the implant by assigning the telescope implant procedure to a new Ambulatory Payment Classification (APC).  If finalized, the new APC would be effective January 1, 2014.  The telescope will continue to be reimbursed by a transitional pass-through payment code, specifically created by CMS for the new technology in 2011, through January 1, 2014.

"This funding will help VisionCare drive continued adoption of this vision-improving procedure and provide life-changing therapy to end-stage AMD patients," said Allen Hill, CEO of VisionCare.  "Along with the recent positive developments in reimbursement and the enthusiastic reception for the technology from the ophthalmic physician community, VisionCare is well-positioned to accelerate growth.  We are pleased that LSAF recognizes the treatment's potential and is willing to put significant capital behind VisionCare's management team.  They understood our needs and were able to execute in a timely manner."

"We are excited to fund VisionCare and its revolutionary products.  Prior to this breakthrough telescope implant, these patients were essentially blind and severely restricted from doing even the most basic tasks," stated Rich Gumer, Chief Executive Officer of LSAF.  " Allen Hill and his team have done an excellent job getting regulatory approval and securing Medicare reimbursement.  As a leader in providing non-dilutive growth capital to medical device companies, LSAF is very pleased to help fund such a high caliber company and management team."

About VisionCareVisionCare Ophthalmic Technologies, Inc., headquartered in Saratoga, CA, is a privately-held company focused on development, manufacturing, and marketing of implantable ophthalmic devices and technologies that are intended to significantly improve vision and quality of life for individuals with untreatable retinal disorders. VisionCare's Implantable Miniature Telescope was invented by company founders Yossi Gross and Isaac Lipshitz. Information on VisionCare can be found at www.visioncareinc.net.

About the Implantable Miniature Telescope and the CentraSight Treatment ProgramThe Implantable Miniature Telescope (by Dr. Isaac Lipshitz) is indicated to improve vision in patients greater than or equal to 75 years of age with stable severe to profound vision impairment associated with end-stage AMD. This level of visual impairment constitutes statutory (legal) blindness. Smaller than a pea, the telescope is implanted in one eye in an outpatient surgical procedure.

The first-of-kind telescope implant is integral to a new patient care program, CentraSight, for patients with end-stage macular degeneration. The CentraSight treatment program involves a patient management process and access to reimbursement information for patients and physicians.

Patients and physicians can find more information about the telescope implant and related treatment program at www.CentraSight.com or by calling 1-877-99-SIGHT.

About Life Sciences Alternative Funding LLC ("LSAF")

LSAF provides non-dilutive, debt capital exclusively to fund the growth of commercial-stage life sciences companies with a primary focus on medical device and diagnostics companies.  LSAF's highly flexible structures provide long-term capital solutions ranging from $10 million to $50 million or more.  LSAF is majority-owned by affiliates of the Perella Weinberg Partners Asset Based Value Strategy.

*CPT copyright 2013 American Medical Association. All rights reserved. CPT is a registered trademark of the American Medical Association.

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