In a mysterious press release, Criticare announces that it will become the direct point of contact
for the entire customer base of Alaris
Vital Check(R) monitors starting September 1, 2005. In the seven years
that Alaris has OEMed this device from Criticare, the installed base
for the Alaris Vital Check monitor has grown to over 1,000 sites and
20,000 units world wide. Criticare also announced the hiring of a sales
force to take over direct sales of the Vital Check spot vital signs
monitor.

This press release is attributed to Criticare, but there is no mention
of the release on their site, nor at Cardinal's or Alaris' sites.
Alaris Medical still shows the Vital Check product on their web site.

All this raises many interesting questions. Who initiated this change,
Alaris/Cardinal or Criticare? If Criticare's going to sell their vital
signs monitor directly, is Alaris going to abandon this market
segment? Not likely.

UPDATE: This from Criticare's March 31, 2005 Form 10-Q:
"Alaris was acquired by Cardinal Health in 2004. Subsequently, Cardinal
Health made the decision to exit from vital signs monitor sales
activities, since those products no longer fit within its core business
strategy." Criticare reported a $1,447,180 decrease in sales to Alaris
in the nine months ended March 31, 2005.  In Criticare's last Form 10-k, Alaris is designated their largest customer, generating 12.5%, 13.0%, and 13.4% of total revenue in
fiscal 2004, 2003, and 2002, respectively.