HME News

NOV 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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Mobility Briefs Consumers support accessories bill WASHINGTON – The ITEM Coalition and 32 national consumer and clinical organizations have sent a letter to leaders in the House of Representatives, asking them to pass a bill that would halt competitive bidding-related prices for accessories for complex rehab manual wheelchairs. "We are writing to ex- press our strong support for this new legisla- tion," states the letter, which was sent to the leaders of the House Ways & Means and En- ergy & Commerce committees on Sept. 21. Earlier this year, CMS stopped plans to apply bid-related pricing for complex rehab power wheelchairs. Reduced pricing for complex manual power wheelchairs, however, has been in place since Jan. 1, 2016. Among the groups that signed on to the letter: United Spinal Association, Amputee Coalition, Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, Paralyzed Veterans of America and United Cerebral Palsy. NSM expands to Nebraska… NASHVILLE, Tenn. – National Seating & Mobility has opened a new branch in Lincoln, Neb., its first in the state. The location will provide complex rehab services across southeast Nebraska. "NSM is proud to extend our CRT expertise and offerings to clients in Nebras- ka, said Bill Mixon, NSM CEO. "We're com- mitted to growing our national network of experienced assistive technology providers to reach more individuals in need of mobility solutions." …makes two promotions NASHVILLE, Tenn. – National Seating & Mobil- ity has promoted Charles Sargeant to senior vice president of funding operations and Ka- tie Stevens to regional vice president. "NSM is committed to invest in key talent as the company continues to grow," said Bill Mixon, CEO. Sargeant will oversee the company's investments in technology enhancements, processor training, and career development. He was previously regional vice president, helping to drive business in the West. Ste- vens replaces Sargeant. Previously, she served in a number of business development and operations roles at NSM. People news: Dr. Cooper Dr. Rory Cooper has been named as the recipient of the "Science and Environment Medal" as part of the this year's Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medals or "Sammies." Cooper is one of seven winners who was chosen from 26 finalists and more than 440 nominees by a selection committee that includes leaders from the government, business, the foundation and nonprofit com- munity, academia, entertainment and the media. Cooper, who directs the Human En- gineering Research Laboratories and serves as associate dean for inclusion in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh, was honored for de- signing innovative wheelchairs and other as- sistive technologies. ■ RESNA's Mary Ellen Buning shares how the organization is broadening the way it thinks about aging. See story page 19. 16 h M e N ew S / N ove M ber 2017 / www.h M e N ew S . C o M Numotion ramps up remote service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 CHAS Group expands in Florida, eyes Georgia . . . . . . . . 16 NRRTS exhibits at rehab medicine conference . . . . . . . . 16 Lifelong Houston resident talks Harvey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 CHAS Group hits sweet spot Telemed to the rescue Houston has big heart Grim Reapers The members of Grim Reaper Fitness Northeast, a triatholon club based out of Rochester, N.Y., in collaboration with Monroe Wheelchair, a mobility provider also based there, rode their bikes 35 miles to raise awareness and raise money for Rochester Accessible Adventures. RAA is a nonprofit organization that works with the community to ensure individuals with disabilities are able to access active and inclusive recreation and sports opportunities with their family and friends. Monroe Wheelchair, whose president, Doug Westerdahl, sits on the RAA board, hosted the ride at its location. C H A S G R o u p s e e p A G e 1 8 First person: Anne kieschnik By Liz Beau L ieu, e ditor MIDDLEBURG, Fla. – CHAS Group, a physical and occupational therapy practice specializing in wheeled mobility and complex seating evaluations, has nearly all of Florida covered and is in the process of entering the Geor- gia market. In Florida, the company is still trying to fill gaps in coverage in the Naples area and in Citrus County, but it has the rest of the state covered with 20 contract PTs and OTs. In Georgia, it's wait- ing for licensure approval. "For several years, I've been By Liz Beau L ieu, e ditor A A N I m PO r TANT part of the growth strategy of CHAS Group is what Cindi Petito calls "telemed." The practice some- times uses thera- LINK, which pro- vides HIPAA-secure video and file sharing, as a "virtual office" to evaluate the needs of its patients remotely. "If we don't have a thera- pist covering an area, or the By Liz Beau L ieu, e ditor HOUSTON – Anne Kieschnik has worked in the complex rehab industry for more than 38 years and has lived in Houston her whole life. She's no stranger to hurricanes and tropi- cal storms, but Hurricane Harvey in August packed a punch like she'd never seen before. "There was 59 inches of water, depend- ing on where you were," said Kieschnik, an ATP development manager for Numotion. "There's just no place for that water to go." Kieschnik was lucky enough to live in an area that was an island of sorts, thanks to some culvert work going on in the area. That meant her house stayed relatively dry, but with everything around her surround- ed by water, she couldn't get out, and that meant she couldn't get to work. Luckily, Kieschnik says Numotion was able to assemble "a skeleton crew" at its office in Houston to field calls that were coming in from customers. "We just wanted to be a resource," she said. "We asked them where they were, we asked them for their contact info, we asked them if they had gotten into contact with FE m A and if they needed a letter from us (to apply for assistance)." Kieschnik says Numotion was able to get loaner wheelchairs to some of its custom- ers, thanks in part to donations from other company locations. "We're telling people, 'It may not be the best, and it may not be like your old one, but 'We look at every aspect of their life,' Petito says patient lives in a rural area and they can't get to a clinic because they're homebound, we'll do telemed," said Petito, OT r /L, ATP, CAPS. "It's just another way to reach out to patients." It's a tool that will come in handy as CHAS Group sets its sights on expanding into Georgia, which has large swaths of rural areas, particularly in the southern part of the state. asked by providers in Georgia to expand into that area, espe- cially southern Georgia," said Cindi Petito, OT r /L, ATP, CAPS. "There's a huge need." Helping CHAS Group grow in Florida: The company secured contracts this year with a number of managed care companies in the state for m edicare and m edic- aid, including Simply Healthcare Plans and Amerigroup. Not helping the company grow: the lack of therapists expe- rienced in seating and mobility. Petito's seven most recent hires are new to the industry, she says. "The biggest challenge we have had in growing is the thera- pists who want to learn this skill Cindi Petito Anne Kieschni K , an ATP develop- ment manager for Numotion, has lived in Houston all her life . Hurricane Harvey and its 59 inches of water were the worst, she says . By Liz Beau L ieu, e ditor ATLANTA – When the American Congress of r ehabilitation m edicine held its annual event here on Oct. 23-28, N rr TS was on hand to raise awareness of the C r TS and rr TS com- munity and the issues affecting them. The AC rm serves a global community of researchers and clinicians who deliver evidence-based rehabilitation interventions to people with disabling conditions, such as spinal cord injury. "To accomplish what we want to accom- plish in Congress, it's going to take involve- ment from all around," said Weesie Walker, executive director of N rr TS. Among the things stakeholders are try- ing to accomplish is passing legislation that would reverse competitive bidding-related pricing for accessories for manual complex rehab wheelchairs. Walker said one of N rr TS's specific goals for the event is promoting its series of webi- nars, which can help educate researchers and NRRTS spreads the good word T E L E M E D s e e p A G e 1 8 k I E S C H N I k s e e p A G e 1 8 N R R T S s e e p A G e 1 8

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