HME News

AUG 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 ■ Providers see a big return on investment when they adopt mobile technology, says Apacheta's Aimee Swope. See story this page. LifeCare Solutions exits California . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Nunn's Home Medical Equipment turns 75 . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Lincare settles claims allegations for $20 million . . . . . . 11 Airway Oxygen hit with ransomware attack . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Briefs Tonka Medical Supplies chases federal contracts MINNEAPOLIS – Tonka Medical Supplies, an HME and supplies provider, plans to ex- pand sales by applying for a GSA Sched- ule and actively pursuing federal contracts, it announced June 12. "The opportunity to service government accounts, specifically Veterans Affairs, opens up significantly more markets throughout the region as our goal continues to be expanded sales of our home care medical supplies," stated Barbara Platten, general manager. Tonka Medical Supplies, founded in 1995, carries a full line of DME and supplies. It also spe- cializes in herbs, natural remedies, dietary supplements and natural cosmetics. Court sides with Fairview HME ST. LOUIS – The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit has upheld the dismissal of a class action lawsuit filed against Fair- view Health Services alleging its HME di- vision made unauthorized telemarketing calls in violation of the Telephone Con- sumer Protection Act. The court ruled that Samuel Zean, who filed the complaint in Minnesota, had given prior express written consent to receive calls. Fairview provided documents with Zean's signature, giving the company permission to contact him by phone, including by cell phone. Fairview Health Services is a nonprofit corpora- tion that operates hospitals and clinics in Minnesota and sells HME under the name Fairview Home Medical Equipment. Short takes: Orchid Medical, Home Care Medical Orchid Medical in Orlando, Fla., is cel- ebrating its 15-year anniversary. The company was established in 2002 as a re- gional DME provider to the workers' com- pensation market...Home Care Medical has been reaccredited by the Joint Com- mission. The New Berlin, Wis.-based pro- vider became the state's first accredited HME provider in 1990. Serving southeast- ern Wisconsin since 1974, Home Care Medicare provides enteral nutrition, rehab technology and respiratory. People in the news CHME, a Foster City, Calif.-based HME provider, has named Lauren Barranti executive vice president. Barranti was most recently vice president of managed care at Apria Healthcare. She has more than 20 years of experience working with medical providers, insurers and govern- ment agencies to support the healthcare needs of patients across the country. "Lauren very much appreciates the busi- ness model that CHME has created and understands our market approach and is excited to help our company continue to expand our business and service even more patients in need," said Bernie Zim- mer, CHME's founder and CEO. www. HME n E w S . COM / augu ST 2017 / HME n E w S 11 WYOMING, Mich. – Airway Oxygen has experienced a ransom- ware attack affecting 500,000 individuals, according to the breach portal of the Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Health and Human Services. In a notice to customers, Airway Oxygen said it learned that an unidentified criminal(s) had gained access to its technical infrastructure and installed ransomware to deny the company access to its own data. "We have no indication that any of your protected health information stored on the computer network was accessed and acquired," it stated in the notice. "Nevertheless, we wanted to provide notice to you so that you would be aware of the situation." Airway Oxygen said the types of protected health By Kelly Bothum, Contributing Writer A pu SH t O break its paperwork log- jam and speed up the billing process prompted MedCare Equipment Com- pany to switch to a mobile delivery system just over a year ago. t he HME provider partnered with Apa- cheta, a mobile solutions provider, to cut paperwork, standardize delivery and reduce its days sales outstanding number. u sing Apacheta's software, MedCare transitioned to a paperless environment using mobile devic- es to transmit information between depart- ments and optimize travel time for drivers. In doing so, the company decreased its days sales outstanding number from 16 to 2½ days, slashed the time it takes to plan routes by 200% and saved the equivalent of about 46 trees. t echnicians spend about 10 minutes fewer at a stop and are able to send delivery information while still in the patient's driveway. "It was basically night and day," said Zac Shannon, network analyst for MedCare, which serves parts of p ennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia and New York. "It was really exciting for us because it fixed a lot of issues right away. In this case, it was in a few days we could see a change." More companies like MedCare are look- ing for ways to streamline delivery and By Kelly Bothum, Contributing Writer ROME, N.Y. – t he HME land- scape looks plenty different than it did when Martin J. Nunn started Nunn's Hospi- tal Supplies. But 75 years and one name change later, Nunn's Home Medical Equipment and its third-generation owners are still focused on providing the same kind of personalized care to a growing New York region. N u n n 's h a s e x p a n d e d beyond its Rome, N.Y., head- quarters with two acquisi- tions in the past 17 months. Last month, the company announced it had acquired t r i - C o u n t y H o m e C a re 's assets, excluding its Veter- ans Affairs customers. t he move strengthens the compa- ny's presence in the Syracuse CLEARWATER, Fla. – Lincare has agreed to pay $20 million to settle allegations that it fraudu- lently billed for oxygen equip- ment and services. t he company admits no wrongdoing, according to news reports. A whistleblower lawsuit alleges that Lincare billed Medi- care and other government health programs for unneces- sary oxygen equipment and tanks, fabricated orders and improperly waived co-pays and deductibles. t he lawsuit also alleges Lin- care paid kickbacks to physicians and their families by providing oxygen and supplies for free. In court documents, Lincare said it followed regulations and blamed "garden variety" When in Rome region, as well as its core busi- ness of respiratory products. It follows the acquisition of Rothschild's Home Health Care of Syracuse in Decem- ber 2015. "My grandfather started it and it was built on the trust of the community," said Erin Weiman, the COO, who runs the company with her moth- er, Sheila Nunn Murphy, and her husband, Shawn Weiman. "Everyone trusted Nunn's would take good care of them. Especially in Rome, half the people who walk in we know personally. We do feel obli- gated to take good care of everyone." Nunn's primary area of focus is respiratory products, although its C p A p business is quickly growing, Weiman said. As it grows, however, the company is moving away from participation in Medicare, focusing on private insur- ance and retail customers, which make up a 60-40 split Lincare settles fraud allegations errors, according to an article on Reuters.com. t he lawsuit was original- ly filed as two separate suits in 2009 and 2010 by former employees SallyJo Robbins and Kathleen Dunlap in New York, and Germano Lima and Rober- to Rabassa in Massachusetts. t hey will receive $6 million of the judgment; the government will receive $9 million. In November 2016, a whis- tleblower lawsuit filed against Lincare by a former employee was dropped in response to a request by the employee, Rebecca Saiff. t hat lawsuit accused Lincare of, among other things: improperly bill- ing Medicare for equipment that was not reimbursable, failing to provide services, and retaining overpayments to which it knew it was not entitled. hme Airway Oxygen hit with ransomware Switch to mobile like 'night and day' Provider admits no wrongdoing A I R WAY s e e pa g e 1 2 N U N N ' S s e e pa g e 1 2 M E d C A R E s e e pa g e 1 2 Rome, N.Y.-based Nu NN 's h ome m edical e quipme N t keeps it in the family . From left: Shawn Weiman, vice president; Erin Weiman, COO; Sheila Murphy, president; and Megan Murphy, respiratory manager . The family-owned Nunn's Home Medical Equipment keeps reinventing itself go mobile

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