HME News

OCT 2018

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 h M e N ew S / O c TO be R 2018 / www.h M e N ew S .c OM 19 Providers report reduced access WASHINGTON – An alarming 65% of complex rehab providers say CM s 's application of bid-related pricing to accessories for complex manual wheelchairs has reduced their ability to provide these prod- ucts to Medicare beneficiaries, according to a new survey from NCART. An additional 22% say they have been holding off on limiting the accessories they provide, but manual accessories if nothing changes in the next 90 days, they'll have no choice. "That equates to 87% of the Medicare CRT suppliers indicating that currently, or within the next 90 days, they will not be able to pro- vide the right complex rehab wheel- chair systems that Medicare benefi- ciaries with significant disabilities require," NCART stated. To evaluate the impact of bid pricing on accessories for complex manual wheelchairs, NCART con- ducted a confidential survey, gener- ating responses from 45 companies with 402 Medicare supplier loca- tions across the country. s takeholders plan to use the survey results to lobby Congress to pass H.R. 3730 and s . 486, bills that would stop bid-related pricing for accessories for complex manual wheelchairs. The pricing has been in place since Jan. 1, 2016. HME ATP TALES C O n T I n u e d f r O M p r e V I O u S p A g e RECRUIT C O n T I n u e d f r O M p r e V I O u S p A g e DICKERSON C O n T I n u e d f r O M p r e V I O u S p A g e a kid, move through space on their own for the first time—it makes it all worth it. And to see people be grateful. It's the rarest of all human virtues: gratitude and appreciation. I've celebrated birthdays with these people. My kids were raised around these people. HME: Even though you're just now becoming president-elect, you've been involved in NRRTS… Dickerson: For a couple hundred years now. HME: Why become president now? Dickerson: I'm a guerilla fighter, but I'm mellower now, so I can behave a bit more, and I've run out of posi- tions to hold on the NRRT s board. And I'm 64: If I serve as president for two years and past-president for two years, then that'll be a nice way to close out 45 some-odd years. HME: How do you hope to leave an imprint as president of NRRTS? Dickerson: How do we get more reg- istrants? There's a beauty in critical mass. w hen I look at the o T and PT associations in New York, they have nearly 5,000 members. You can get a whole lot done with that kind of clout. s o one of the things I hope to do as president is influence other people to become registrants. HME: You called yourself a guerilla fighter . Do you also hope to influence other people to become more politi- cally active? Dickerson: That's another thing that drives me crazy. w e get a win here and a win there, but we're not get- ting big wins. w e're going back 12 years on a separate benefit for com- plex rehab. w e're still not fully con- veying what we do and the value of what we do. People think, "It's just a wheelchair; how can it be $20,000?" People in wheelchairs are hit from so many directions— social services, transportation—that it's hard for them to just focus on complex rehab. I don't know how you emerge as a top priority. HME: How do you plan to get there: increased involvement, in NRRTS and politically? Dickerson: NRRT s has worked very, very hard over the years to do exactly these two things. I do know we need to stop masking what the issues and costs are. w hen someone says, "I can't wait that long" for their wheelchair, I say, "I can take a check or a credit card and have it to you in three or four weeks." The problem is not us. People will have more of a handle on that, if you speak with them frankly. HME your patient if you limit your knowledge." Ka T ie R O be RTS Roberts, director of HM e for Cimarron Medical s ervices in o klahoma, is young for an ATP: 36. "My background is a bache- lor's degree in speech pathology. I decided it wasn't for me, but that the technology field was. s o I think we need to capture more people who are coming out of rehab sciences programs. "I also took the time to volun- teer for muscular dystrophy sum- mer camps, where I got hands-on experience with the technology and that's where I found my love for the seating and positioning side of things. "It's scary (to think of the lack of ATPs in the future). w e're in rural o klahoma. My job at a hos- pital-based DM e is to take care of my community. w e may not see them right out of rehab, but once they're at our DM e , they're a cus- tomer for life." HME says the organization, which is an accredited provider for the Interna- tional Association for Continuing e ducation and Training, is in the midst of trying to figure out how it can better flex these muscles to help potential ATPs meet requirements. "Michele Gunn (an ATP at Browning's Health Care) calls it the farm," she said. " w e don't have a farm anywhere to raise them. w e have education and webinars, but we'd have to create a more stringent program that's accredited." HME

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