HME News

APR 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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■ Aeroflow's mass mailers remind providers the option to sell is there, says Andrew Amoth. See story this page. Remote oxygen setups offer flexibility . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Q&A: Aimee Swope on mobile technology . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Reporter's notebook: What's with that spike? . . . . . . . . . 10 Binson's opens new retail location . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 10 hme news / April 2018 / www.hmenews.com By Theresa Flaher T y, Managing e ditor G i v i n g h o m e c a r e providers more setup options allows them to serve more patients—and that's good for both providers and patients. " a t current reimbursement rates, D me providers have had to scale back staff and service areas," says Tony r oss, senior marketing manager for Philips r espironics. "( r emote setups) afford D me providers the flex- ibility to serve these remote patients and ensure they get the products they need, even when a technician is not able to drive to the patient's home." By l iz Beaulieu, e ditor S ome eagle eyes on Twit- ter noticed that the a ugust data for our m edicare m ar- ket m arker (see the back of the book) looked like it climbed m ount e ver- est. For the unini- tiated, the marker tracks the number of allowed m edicare beneficiaries for five of the most popular D me products: oxygen concen- trator, semi-electric hospital bed, c P a P, standard wheelchair and power wheelchair. For oxygen concentrators, for example, the trajectory of the number of bennies looked some- thing like this for the three most recent reporting periods: June: 218,411. July: 290,574. a ugust: 321,652. o ' n eal commented that his own business ramped up fairly dramat- ically in the same time period, too. g rasping at straws, he suggested the spike was related to the D merc s pulling back on audits. i emailed my sources at the PD ac (the Pricing, Data a nalysis and c oding c ontractor), where we get the data for the marker, as well as for our hme Databank, and they responded thusly: " e xcellent question, l iz. i 'm not sure of all the factors that may have affected the counts, but one may be due to a large number of claims adjustments as a result of the 21st c entury c ures a ct." The c ures a ct, as you'll recall, required cm S to retroactively delay a second round of reim- bursement cuts that went into effect in non-competitive bidding areas on July 1, 2016, until Jan. 1, 2017, allowing hme providers to essentially recoup six months worth of reimbursement. "P.S.," my sources continued, "you probably noticed that on the report for September the count of By Tracy Orzel, c ontributing Writer MEDIA, Pa. – m ore providers are mak- ing the switch to mobile solutions and the results speak for themselves. a fter tapping a pacheta's Trans- port m anager and Transport ace , one provider saw an increase of 2,500 new confirmed orders each month and reduction of DS o by eight days. hme n ews recently spoke with a imee Swope, customer success specialist for a pacheta, about the ben- efits of going paperless. HME N E ws: Have you noticed more providers shifting to mobile? Aimee Swope: g iven the tools and technology we have today, paper is definitely not efficient. We see more and more providers moving to a paperless environment in an effort to improve their operational efficien- cies and bottom-line performance. HME: How can HME providers ensure buy-in from their employees? Swope: The best way is by commu- nicating the benefits and efficiencies. While the software provides operational and bot- tom-line benefits to the overall organization, it also streamlines the workloads of individual employees. HME: Where do you see the technology mov- ing in the future? Swope: o ur customers can look forward to more insightful tools to allow them to man- age their delivery workflows in areas of deliv- ery technician visibility and performance, illumination of order type service costs, more robust and numerous data integration capa- bilities for back end systems, as well as addi- tional modalities of care such as pharmacy and home health. HME What's behind that spike in utilization, you ask? Remote setups offer flexibility o per A tion A l flexibility a provider's home oxygen busi- ness is currently limited by a number of factors, including how many technicians they employ, what a p a t i e n t requires and w h e r e t h e y live, says r oss. " Wi t h t h e p r o g r a m , the provider c a n d e t e r - m i n e w h i c h patients will benefit from a technician visiting their home, for oxygen or any other ser- vice, and those that simply require oxygen equipment delivery and instruction," he said. "That allows providers to spend more time with patients that have higher needs, while Providers put paper in the past 0 2 d e l i v e r y s e e n e x t pa g e Tony Ross Aimee Swope beneficiaries allowed decreased substantially." There you have it. HME New program allows providers to spend more time with patients that have higher needs By Theresa Flaher T y, Managing e ditor YARMOUTH, Maine – While it's not unusual for national providers to send query letters to providers that may be looking to sell, their tone this time around feels decid- edly different, some of those pro- viders say. a recent letter from r otech h ealthcare details the cuts in m edicare reimbursement for oxygen and c P a P, and notes that m edicaid rates are expected to decline to m edicare rates and that audits are rejecting valid claims. "These drastic financial impacts have caused many D me companies to consider exiting the industry," states the letter. " i f you are considering exiting the D me industry, r otech h ealth- M&A: Buyers turn up the heat care has successfully assisted dozens of D me companies over the past couple of years and may be able to assist you." Provider Tyler r iddle, who has received 11 copies of r otech's let- ter, says the nationals are trying to "scare" providers into selling their businesses. "This is the first time i 've seen a letter like this playing up all the negatives of being in the industry," said r iddle, vice presi- dent of a lbany, g a.-based mr S h omecare. Provider Jason Jones says he gets letters twice a year from r otech and has also received let- ters from a eroflow h ealthcare, which takes a different tack. "The a eroflow letter is more, we want to reward you for all M & A s e e n e x t pa g e exit strategy p roviders Briefs Apria opens up e-prescribing platform LAKE FOREST, Calif. – Apria Healthcare has re-launched DMEhub, an e-prescribing platform, for all DME prescribers and pro- viders. "Apria's goal is to improve the over- all experience for patients, prescribers and suppliers," said Dan Starck, CEO of Apria. "By opening up the e-prescribing platform to the entire medical equipment industry, we aim to better serve all patients, regard- less of their DME supplier." Apria acquired DMEhub in June 2016. The intuitive plat- form uses "if/then" logic to gather the documentation needed to support each patient's specific order and makes it easy for prescribers to electronically sign their orders, according to a press release. While not a requirement, there is an option to integrate the platform with any workflow management system or other healthcare software; additionally, it can be connected to any electronic medical record system, the release says. The overall goal, Apria says: improve order accuracy and compli- ance. "High error rates lead to delays in equipment delivery," said Ian Worden, vice president, product development, Apria. "By creating a smoother and simpler pro- cess, hospitals can discharge their pa- tients faster, and patients can start benefit- ting from life-changing therapies sooner." Q mes secures $175 m in financing NEW YORK – QMES has locked in a $157 million senior secured credit facility from CIT Group's consumer finance business. QMES, a portfolio company of Quadrant Management, a private investment firm based in New York City, will use the new credit facility to refinance legacy debt, support growth and make strategic invest- ments, according to a press release. "This new credit facility will enable us to expand beyond our core markets and further so- lidify our position in our current markets," said Luke McGee, CEO of QMES, which serves 500,000 patients in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states. "It will also allow us to continue to invest in our best-in-class technology solutions which continue to in- novate our service offerings to providers and patients." Last year, QMES secured a $65 million secured senior credit facility from CIT, and in 2014, it secured a $50 mil- lion credit facility. Viemed obtains $5 million credit line LAFAYETTE, La. – Viemed Healthcare has se- cured a two-year loan for $5 million from Whitney Bank, it announced Feb. 22. The loan provides Viemed, a provider of post- acute respiratory services, with "liquid- ity and flexibility, giving us quick access to non-dilutive capital should we need to bridge any working capital requirements during a period of significant growth for our company," said Casey Hoyt, CEO, in a release. Viemed was split off from Patient Home Monitoring in late 2017.

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