HME News

JUN 2017

HME News is the monthly business newspaper for home medical equipment providers. This controlled circulation publication reaches 17,100 home medical equipment services providers, including traditional HME dealers & suppliers, hospital- and pharmacy-o

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Providers ■ A career in respiratory therapy has been rewarding, says Mary Wightman. See story this page. Pacific Pulmonary settles for $11.4M . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Deals pick up in Q2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Q&A: Provider Ryan French . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Apria hit with class-action lawsuit. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Briefs Teijin exits homecare biz TOKYO – Teijin Limited is selling Braden Part- ners and Associated Healthcare Systems to PPS HME, an affiliate of Quadrant Man- agement, effectively exiting the homecare business. Teijin entered the North Ameri- can homecare market in 2008, when it acquired Braden Partners in Bakersfield, Calif., Associated Healthcare Systems in Amherst, N.Y., and Home Therapy Equip- ment in Glen Falls, N.Y. Braden Partners is better known as Pacific Pulmonary Ser- vices—Braden Partners acquired Med- Mart in 1993 and renamed the business Pacific Pulmonary Services in 1996. Teijin said "extraordinary losses, mainly on sales of assets, will be recorded in fiscal 2016, which ended in March 2017," according to a press release. Med Emporium expands footprint CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Med Emporium LLC, a home respiratory services provider, has acquired Mobile Med Inc. with locations in Greenville, S.C., and Rome, Ga. The acqui- sition allows Med Emporium to better serve customers in South Carolina and expands its territory into Georgia. Mobile Med has been in business for more than 10 years. Mobile Med's employees, including founders Doug Trenor and Tim Hayes, will support sales and growth efforts in those markets. As part of Med Emporium, they will have access to advanced clinical systems and support in- frastructure that will help increase efficiency, according to a release. CHME secures $4M term loan COSTA MESA, Calif. – Pacific Mercantile Bank has extended a $4 million term loan to CHME, an HME provider. CHME, originally California Home Medical Equipment, was re- ferred to Pacific Mercantile Bank by Unique Investment Corp., CHME's private equity sponsor. "With the knowledge they gained, they were able to structure a loan that meets our financing needs and allows us to in- crease our working capital to support the growth opportunities we are seeing," said Bernie Zimmer, president of CHME. "Pacific Mercantile Bank also presented us with a so- lution that helped us streamline our banking relationships, make us more efficient, and take costs out of the business. With their support, we have a stronger foundation for generating profitable growth." Located in San Francisco, CHME specializes in respira- tory equipment, custom power mobility and seating products, and DME. It has been in business for thirty years. People Jeannette Ramcharan, president of Re- splife Medical Solutions in Lanham, Md., will be featured in Worldwide Leaders in Healthcare published by the International Association of HealthCare Professionals. Ramcharan, an RRT, has practiced for more than 16 years. www. HME n E ws. C o M / jun E 2017 / HME n E ws 11 By Theresa Flaher T y, Managing e ditor W hen Ryan French first started working at Jim's Pharmacy & h ome h ealth two-and-a-half years ago, the provider was still using a phone message book to jot down customer special orders. "It was a very impractical solution and I immediately said, 'Let's use an e xcel work- book we can all access over our network,'" said French, who had never worked in the industry before. "I've definitely pushed adopting technology for more things." By Theresa Flaher T y, Managing e ditor YARMOUTH, Maine – a fter a slow first quarter, buyer appetites for h M e businesses are pick- ing up, say M& a analysts. "There's still more sellers than buyers, but transactions are getting done," said Rick Glass, president of Steven Richards & a sso- ciates. "I think we are bottoming out on the reimbursement, and we're slowly starting to get some appetite even in the traditional h M e and respiratory space." While reimbursement remains dire, the business-friendly new administra- tion, along with new leadership at the Department of h ealth and h uman Ser- vices and CMS, has analysts cautiously optimistic. "We're not going back to the good old days, but some fairer treatment of provid- ers might allow them to move forward," said Glass. Still casting a shadow on the improving market, however, is uncertainty around what could hap- pen to the a ffordable Care a ct. "We're seeing hesita- tion from people with the uncertainty over how a (healthcare overhaul) might impact Medicaid," said Brad Smith, manag- ing director/partner at Vertess. "If we could get some direction one way or another, I think that would help a lot." Where there isn't hesi- tation, say analysts: Buy- ers—whether they are national or regional players—are looking to expand their geographical footprint. Case in point: Rotech h ealthcare in a pril announced it had acquired Griffin h ome h ealth Care, which has three locations in n orth Carolina. Rotech currently operates in 18 markets in the state. a lso in Griffin's favor: It's simply a good business, says Don Davis, president of Duck- ridge a dvisors, which advised Griffin in the deal. "That was a good, family-run business over the years with a good reputation and also access to bid contracts," he said. "There's not overwhelming value in the contracts— the value is in being able to offer the full line of products for referral sources." The supply space, which was hot in 2016, will stay hot in 2017, say analysts. "CP a P supplies, urologicals, wound care—yes, I would expect we would con- tinue to see consolidation there," said Pat Clifford, managing director, home medical equipment, for The Braff Group. hme By T. Flaher T y, Managing e ditor J o B PR o SP e CTS for respi- ratory therapists look rosy, with an expected growth rate of about 12% and increased recognition by the medical community of the role they play in keeping costs down. But long-time RTs say they've always found it to be a fulfilling career. Buyer appetite for HME improves mergers & acquisitions It's no desk job: RTs say they love their career choice "There's always been plenty of job opportunities and lots of variety in what you can do as an RT," said Mary Wightman, a staff respiratory therapist with Pediat- ric h ome Services in Roseville, Minn., with 35 years of experi- ence. "It's not a desk job." U.S. n ews & World Report recently ranked respiratory therapist as n o. 21 in Best h ealth Care Jobs and n o. 36 in The 100 Best Jobs. The profession is expected to add nearly 15,000 jobs by 2024 with a median sal- ary of $57,790. P E o P l E skills Most RTs work in the hospital environment, anywhere from the emergency room to the Ryan French has knack for tech RYA N f r e n c h s e e pa g e 1 2 T H E R A p i S T S s e e pa g e 1 2 'I've always had that ability to use a program and figure out how it works and why it works' French, home health director for the Port a ngeles, Wash.-based provider, was recently named a Brightree a mbassador for his involvement and contributions to the Brightree o nline Community, where he has started more than 900 conversations. h e spoke with h M e n ews recently about the value of peer support. hme News: Have you always had a knack for tech? Ryan French: I've always kind of had that ability to use a program and figure out how it works and why it works, and then expand on that to figure out how I want to use it, whether that's e xcel or Brightree Software. hme : How do you use the online support Don Davis Rick Glass Respi R ato R y the R apist m a R y w ightma N 's role is to set up equipment and ensure it is working properly for that specific patient. Live well a eroflow h ealthcare had a booth at the recent LiveWell e xpo in f letcher, n . c . c ompany representatives shared the benefits of medical equipment with attendees and conducted product demos.

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