Former Long Island firefighter Sarah Apgar develops firehose fitness tool Fitfighter, wins big on ‘Shark Tank’

PORT WASHINGTON, Long Island (WABC) — A former volunteer firefighter from Long Island just won big on ABC’s “Shark Tank” for her new fitness device, which was inspired by her time as a firefighter.

Sarah Apgar, of Port Washington, is the creator of Fitfighter and the Steel Hose.

When Apgar joined the Halesite Volunteer Fire Department in 2012, she noticed the firehouse didn’t have a structured strength training program. Apgar served as a platoon commander in Iraq with the U.S. Army, so she was familiar with regimented strength and weight training programs.

She began using firehoses around the firehouse to train her colleagues.

Throughout the next few years, Apgar began developing a fitness device based upon the firehose. She used real firehose material and filled it with recycled steel shot. She called it the Steel Hose.

The longer the hose, the heavier it is. They range in weight from 5 pounds to 50 pounds.

Local gym owners and trainers started to hear about the product.

“It started to sort of snowball and we sort of thought, wow, I think we’ve got a really special valuable tool here that has applications far reaching beyond where we started for firefighters,” she said.

In 2019, Apgar, a mother of two young girls, sold $45,000 worth of the product.

When COVID struck last spring, Apgar developed an online training platform for the Steel Hose.

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In April and May, she did $40,000 in sales.

Around that time, Apgar received a phone call from producers of “Shark Tank.” They were intrigued with the product and with Apgar’s story. They invited her to appear on the show.

“It’s the dream come true, pinch-yourself-story that people describe,” she said.

The episode was filmed in August and aired November 13.

During the episode, guest Shark Daniel Lubetzky, the creator of KIND bars, bit on Apgar’s offer of $250,000 for a 15 percent stake in Fitfighter.

He offered $250,000 for a 25 percent stake.

Apgar accepted.

Since then, sales have skyrocketed for the Steel Hose and thousands of people purchased memberships to FitFighter’s online training platform. Apgar has 10 trainers. She also leads virtual classes out of her warehouse in Port Washington.

Apgar said she is on a mission to change the way people think about strength training and make them aware of the benefits it can have on people’s physical and mental health.

“I just want people to start moving and moving with weight and learning the principals of strength training,” she said.

Apgar still markets the Steel Hose to fire departments.

She said the FDNY Fire Academy has been using them for the past five years.

“I’m really proud of that. It’s very really special me,” she said.

Apgar said the majority of the production of the Steel Hose will be moving to South Carolina, but some will stay in Port Washington.

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The October 29, 2020 Federal Rule requires that insurers offer patients a tool to research their financial responsibility and both in-network and out-of-network negotiated rates. The MDsave tool, available now, enables 24/7, consumer-friendly price research and allows patients to purchase their care upfront without fear of surprise bills.

BRENTWOOD, Tenn., Oct. 30, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — MDsave, the leading health technology company in transparent, shoppable medical care, announces its ecommerce solution to help insurers meet new transparency requirements issued in an October 29th Final Rule. The Rule, issued jointly by the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and the Treasury, mandates the creation of “an internet-based, self-service tool” that provides “personalized out-of-pocket cost information, and the underlying negotiated rates, for all covered health care items and services,” according to the Transparency in Coverage Final Rule Fact Sheet.

The MDsave transparency tool provides a user-friendly, ecommerce interface that allows patients to instantly purchase a procedure of their choice directly from the website, in addition to enabling personalized cost searches for the required 500 shoppable services and hosting machine-readable files containing all negotiated charges. 

Because each procedure on the MDsave platform includes the most commonly related services and their fees, patients can pay for the entire episode of care upfront without fear of surprise bills.

“Our ecommerce transparency platform is already being implemented for hospitals meeting the January 1, 2021 transparency deadline, so the technology is ready for insurers who want to provide a great patient experience but don’t want to build a tool from the ground up,” explains Greg Born, MDsave President and COO. “We have the platform, the searchability and the transaction capability. All insurers need to provide is the data.”

Insurers must launch their online self-service transparency tools for plan years starting January 1, 2023 for the federally specified 500 shoppable services and plan years starting January 1, 2024 for any remaining services or items.

To learn more, visit 

About MDsave

Co-located in Brentwood, Tenn. and San Francisco, Calif., MDsave is the world’s first online healthcare marketplace, bringing together patients seeking affordable, reliable care with providers offering high-quality services at fair prices. Using cutting-edge technology, MDsave simplifies the healthcare billing process for patients and providers alike through negotiated rates, bundled pricing and upfront payment. The MDsave marketplace also helps employers and payers offer more value to employees and policyholders with out-of-pocket deductible costs. For more information, visit

CONTACT: Kate Steurer MDsave 615-814-6260 [email protected]

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Risk Tool Predicts Hospitalisation and Death

These are the UK coronavirus stories you need to know about today.

Risk Tool Predicts Hospitalisation and Death

UK researchers have developed a COVID-19 risk tool called QCOVID to help assess which patients are at the highest risk of hospital admission or death.

It was developed using data from more than 8 million English GP records of patients aged 19-100 and linked to COVID-19 test results, hospital, and death registry data.

Known risk factors, such as age, ethnicity, and comorbidities are taken into account.

The tool predicted 73% and 74% of the variation in time to death from COVID-19 in men and women, respectively. The results are published in The BMJ.

Lead researcher Julia Hippisley-Cox, a GP and professor of clinical epidemiology and general practice at the University of Oxford, said in a statement: “Risk assessments to date have been based on the best evidence and clinical expertise, but have focused largely on single factors. The QCOVID risk model provides a much more nuanced assessment of risk by taking into account a number of different factors that are cumulatively used to estimate risk.

“This model will help inform clinical advice so that people can take proportionate precautions to protect themselves from COVID-19.”

The tool will be updated as new data emerge. Commenting via the Science Media Centre, Mark Woolhouse, professor of infectious disease epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, said: “This paper is an important landmark in our understanding of COVID-19 risk and paves the way for more emphasis on targeted, risk-based responses to managing the public health threat over the coming months and years.”

Latest Local Lockdown

South Yorkshire is the latest region to move to the very high Tier 3 lockdown measures from Saturday.

The latest 7-day case rates per 100,000 for the area were:

  • Sheffield: 402

  • Barnsley: 367

  • Rotherham: 341

  • Doncaster: 285

Scotland won’t be easing its latest restrictions which were due to end on Monday. They’ll be extended ahead of the introduction of a new tiered system.

Lung Cancer Referrals

The number of people urgently referred to a lung cancer specialist dropped by 75% during the first wave of COVID-19, according to a report from the UK Lung Cancer Coalition (UKLCC).

At least a third of lung cancer patients have already died since the beginning of the pandemic, and some deaths may have been labelled as COVID-19, the report said.

UKLCC Chair, Professor Mick Peake said in a statement: “Fear of engaging with health services, halting the national programme of lung cancer screening pilots, and restricted access to diagnostic tests have all contributed to a drop in urgent 2-week wait GP referrals in England.”

He added: “Government guidance to stay at home with a cough, a key symptom of lung cancer, has also caused further confusion.”

Daily Data

In today’s daily data another 26,688 UK positive tests were reported and 191 deaths.

There are 6479 COVID-19 patients in hospital and 629 ventilator beds are in use.

Nowcast and Forecast

The MRC Biostatistics Unit, University of Cambridge, has

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