HME News

FEB 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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Providers ■ If Amazon wants to participate in HME market, the playing field needs to be level, says Tom Ryan of AAHomecare. See story this page. Newspoll: Amazon would devastate HME industry . . . . . . 1 Year in review: Exits and allegations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Integrity Home Medical expands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Just kidding around at Reliable Medical . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Briefs ProMedica buys O.E. Meyer's HME division TOLEDO, Ohio – ProMedica Home Medical Equipment intends to buy out O.E. Meyer Co.'s HME division, according to the San- dusky Register. The division sells everything from aids to daily living to orthopedics to ramps to CPAP devices. ProMedica, an in- tegrated health and wellness organization that serves counties in northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan, says the acquisition will allow the company to expand its offer- ings and serve consumers in new markets. It plans to keep O.E. Meyer's five HME loca- tions in Sandusky, Fremont, Tiffin, Walbridge and Lorain, and has offered positions to all HME employees, according to the newspa- per. In addition to 12 hospitals, ProMedica has several divisions, including HME. O.E. Meyer will continue to operate industrial, wholesale health care, propane, and car- bonic divisions at eight locations. OIG report : Lincare mostly complied with neb-med policies CLEARWATER, Fla. – Lincare Pharmacy Ser- vices generally complied with Medicare re- quirements when billing for inhalation drugs, according to a new report from the Office of Inspector General. Of 100 claim lines sampled, three did not comply because the beneficiaries' medical records did not sup- port medical necessity, resulting in $48 in overpayments. The OIG recommends that Lincare ensure that medical necessity is ad- equately supported in medical records be- fore billing Medicare. Lincare concurred. SpinLife recognized for customer commitment OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – SpinLife, an online retailer of mobility scooters, has received a five-star rating from TopConsumerReviews. com. The provider offers a price match guarantee, free shipping and educational resources, as well as scholarships and gift cards for students using wheelchairs. "Spin- Life impressed us with their commitment to customers," according to Brian Dolezal of TopConsumerReviews.com. SpinLife, which was founded in 1999, offers scooters, wheel- chairs, walkers and lifts. Short take: Rotech Made4Net, a global provider of supply chain software solutions, has released a case study showing how Rotech Health- care optimized its inventory levels and fulfillment process using WarehouseExpert WMS. Where Made4net made the biggest difference: inventory accuracy and vis- ibility. Rotech's previous manual reporting inserted delays and could lead to inac- curate counts. "It was all manual, so we didn't have a way to see our current inven- tory in real time," said Rotech's inventory supervisor. "The best we could do was a day behind, and much of the time it wasn't completely accurate, but we started cycle counting with the new system five months ago and we are now at 99.8% accuracy." www. HME n E w S .c OM / f E b R ua R y 2018 / HME n E w S 11 By T. Flaher T y, Managing e ditor WASHINGTON – The sale of medi- cal devices over the Internet without a required prescrip- tion is nothing new, but with the possibility of Amazon get- ting into the HME market in a bigger way, stakeholders say the industry needs to take a harder line against them. The issue reared its head recently, when providers in North Dakota were able to obtain CPAP devices though third-party sellers without a prescription. Such sales typi- cally violate state and federal laws, as well as Amazon's own rules. "We have the specific record of the complete sale in North By Tracy Orzel, c ontributing Writer GERMANTOWN, Tenn. – Integrity Home Medical has more than quintupled its retail and ware- house spaces after recently sign- ing a lease for a 10,000-square- foot property in East Memphis, Tenn. "From day one all I've ever By Theresa Flaher T y, Managing e ditor O ur l IST of the five most read provider stories of 2017 features headlines that contain words like "tur- moil" and "uncertainty," which pretty much sums up the year that was. The No. 1 most-read story, "Turmoil continues at Pacific Pulmonary," about the compa- ny's plan to lay off 170 employ- ees, was the latest installment in the ongoing saga about a once strong regional company. While it's likely that competi- tive bidding played a part in the decline of Pacific Pulmonary's fortunes, it probably didn't help that in April, the provider agreed to pay $11.4 million to settle allegations that it par- ticipated in a kickback scheme in our No. 4 most read story, "Pacific Pulmonary settles whistleblower lawsuit." Which brings us to our No. 5 most read story, " u ncertain- ty kills Teijin's bid for u S HME market." The parent company of Braden Partners—aka, Pacif- ic Pulmonary—announced it was cashing in its chips, citing negative developments in u .S. healthcare reform as a primary factor in its decision. Also making hard (or is it easy?) decisions: l ifeCare Solutions, which exited the California market, where it had 30,000 patients and 13 locations. In our No. 2 most read story, " l ifeCare Solutions Integrity Home Medical adds second location had is 1,800-square-feet in a strip mall," said Bob Fournier, owner of Germantown, Tenn.-based Integrity Home Medical. The original space, which is divided by four desks into a 900-square-foot showroom in the front and a 900-square-foot warehouse in the back, will be made into a storefront, while the second location will be used as a warehouse, retail and office Illegal online sales not new, says provider Dakota and we plan to go on record with Amazon with con- cerns about the illegal sale," said Tom r yan, president and CEO of AAHomecare. "Spe- cifically, we are working on putting a letter together for Amazon and other regulatory agencies noting a potential vio- lation of federal and state law in connection." AAHomecare announced in December that it has retained outside counsel to develop a strategy to curb illegal online sales of DME. Such sales are nothing new, says provider John Goodman. "We have written to states when we've bought items from Amazon, saying these 2017: Exits and allegations collide "Unfortunately, with high deductible plans, the consumer is armed with online pricing when they walk in the door and expect us to meet the pricing." – John Galvin, director, Kent Home Medical Equip- ment "They will operate at a loss until they drive all their com- petition out and then have their way with the market and pric- ing. This is their model." –Anonymous "DMEs have enough compe- tition when you consider even Home Depot carries bathroom items." –Linda Moore, director, Indian Territory DME "(Amazon) has superior pur- chasing power that others can- not compete with. Also they have outstanding data analy- sis to determine what products have the highest margins." –Randy Taylor, president, Medical Equipment Affiliates "The 'ship-and-forget' model of healthcare is setting a new precedent of expected care that is quite frightening." –Anonymous "There will be some people that will go through a DME no matter what." –Anonymous "Amazon is already selling DME and it is being returned to Amazon by customers that were expecting something dif- ferent. I was offered an ongoing deal of pallets of Amazon DME returns for me to purchase for 20 cents on the dollar." –Anonymous "Like all the other markets giant retailers get into, they disrupt and displace the inde- pendents out of the market altogether. The only thing DME would be left with is Medicare/ Medicaid." –Anonymous O N L I N E s e e pa g e 1 2 I N T E G R I T y s e e pa g e 1 7 Integr I ty Home m ed I cal in Germantown, Tenn., has quintupled its retail and warehouse space. #1 turmo I l cont I nues at pac I f I c pulmonary #2 l I fecare solut I ons leaves cal I forn I a #3 lI nde- p raxa I r: W I ll merger H ave I mpact on H me? #4 pac I f I c pulmonary settles WHI stleblo W er la W su I t #5 uncerta I nty k I lls t e I j I n's b I d for us mar- ket y E A R i n r e v i e w s e e pa g e 1 2 'My dream is to grow responsibly and carefully' amazon effect READERS WEIGH IN Editor's note: There were so many comments on our Janu- ary Newspoll we are featuring more here.

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