PAVmed and its Lucid Diagnostics, Veris Health subsidiaries lay off 20% of staff

Though many companies wait until the end of the year to trim their workforces and make budget cuts before starting fresh in the new year, a handful of medtech companies have kicked off 2023 with their own slimdowns.

So far, Verily has laid off 15% of its staff and almost completely exited its device-making work; Akili Interactive has eliminated 46 jobs and narrowed the focus of its prescription video games; and now, PAVmed is joining the queue with some cost-cutting measures of its own.

The medtech conglomerate—which also encompasses subsidiaries Lucid Diagnostics and Veris Health—is reducing its workforce by about 20%, PAVmed announced Tuesday afternoon. According to its most recent annual report (PDF), as of the end of March 2022, PAVmed employed 89 full-time employees; Lucid’s own annual report (PDF) confirms that the subsidiaries are staffed by PAVmed-employed personnel.

With that headcount, the layoffs could affect around 18 employees across PAVmed, Lucid and Veris. PAVmed did not respond to a request for more information about the workforce reduction.

According to Tuesday’s release, amid the cost-cutting moves, Lucid’s sales team now counts approximately 40 employees. Previous efforts to expand the team will come to a halt, and the remaining salespeople will instead focus on building and maintaining relationships with larger healthcare clients.

Lucid is also hanging onto its team of nurse practitioners and other clinicians, who help collect cell samples for the EsoGuard esophageal cancer test in Lucid testing facilities and doctors’ offices.

Meanwhile, Veris’ layoffs centered on technology workers “focused on future data analytics.” Its sales team has seemingly remained intact, however, and will aim to expand commercial adoption of the newly launched Veris Cancer Care Platform, which acts as a one-stop shop for cancer patients to report symptoms and access telehealth services. Once that commercialization is “well established,” according to the company, it will return to building out the sales team.

Beyond the layoffs, PAVmed and its subsidiaries are also planning other belt-tightening moves that they’re estimating will reduce quarterly cash burn by at least 25%. The parent company said it won’t be paying out annual cash bonuses this year and that it would indefinitely pause all further development of a trio of its devices: CarpX to treat carpal tunnel syndrome, the PortIO vascular access device and the NextFlo infusion set.

And while Lucid and Veris will double down on the commercialization of their flagship products, most other projects will stop. Lucid, for example, has paused development of an esophageal ablation device that would’ve been used to treat dysplastic Barrett’s Esophagus before it progresses to esophageal cancer, and Veris is putting off the FDA submission for its implantable vital signs monitor—which would integrate with the Cancer Care Platform—until the second half of this year.

Ultimately, according to Lishan Aklog, M.D., chairman and CEO of both PAVmed and Lucid, the companies will be “aggressively streamlining operations to focus substantially all our resources and near-term efforts on accelerating the commercialization of Lucid’s and Veris’ products, resulting in a meaningful reduction in our workforce and quarterly cash burn.”

Aklog continued, “We believe these groundbreaking commercial products, with their large market opportunities, are our most valuable assets, and focusing on them provides our shareholders the greatest near- and long-term value creation opportunity.”