Publisher's Note: Changing Times

The Industry Is Evolving, Providers Are Evolving… and So Are We

It’s 2008, and the HME landscape is a lot different than it was in 1992, when we began publishing a product tabloid. There was no competitive bidding then, no Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) accreditation requirement, no 64 power mobility codes, no oxygen rental cap and no $3.50 price tag for a gallon of gasoline ($1.58 was more like it). And how much attention was CMS paying to the HME industry, when the oldest of America’s 40 million baby boomers were still almost 20 years away from needing Medicare?

These are changing times for the HME industry, and just as providers and manufacturers are having to redefine their businesses, we are redefining ours to better support your business in this brave new world.

Welcome to the premiere issue of HME Business, a natural evolution of Home Health Products.

HME Business continues as the only industry publication with products and services as its core competency, but our product coverage will now include the hows and the whys.

For instance, this month’s cover feature, “10 Top Product Niches to Watch in 2008,” will give you the information you need to achieve your optimum product mix in these times of competitive bidding, funding cuts and changing customer demographics and needs.

In our Product Premiere column, you’ll hear Fastrack’s Spencer Kay tell why the time is right for his company to start a new HME member service organization. And you’ll hear about it first in HME Business. Product Premiere will appear monthly to give you an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at an HME product, service or company making its industry debut.

Don’t miss our exclusive Editors at Large column. HME Business is part of the HME Media Group, which also publishes Mobility Management and Respiratory Management. Editors of these magazines are experts in their respective niches and throughout the year will tell HME Business readers about mobility and respiratory products they have personally tried out or witnessed being used. See what products they picked this month on page 42.

But as you know, the HME industry is made up of more than just products. Since today’s financial climate dictates that providers run a tight ship to remain profitable, we’ll devote a monthly feature article to internal business solutions. This issue, we explore “Management Goals for the New Year.”

HME Business will also update you on the trends, hot-button issues and policies sure to impact your business. For instance, are you keeping an eye on the sleep market? We are: HME Business and Wachovia have partnered on a series of HME Sleep Surveys for 2008 that will track trends and offer analysis. Turn to our News section of this issue for the first installment of the year.

But this is just the start. All year long, we’ll deliver the most critical news, analysis, policy updates and technological innovations the industry has to offer, while simultaneously helping you to apply this information to your business operations. For instance, in future issues we’ll discuss how removing the first-month power chair purchase option and reforming manual chair coverage criteria and coding will impact power and manual chairs and their future designs. We’ll also tell you what products your peers have purchased and why in our “Shop Talk” column, and ask leading providers and clinicians to share their purchasing experiences after industry trade shows.

Finally, you may have noticed that the size of our magazine has changed a bit. We remain a tabloid, but we’ve opted for a Euro-tab size, which is more convenient to hold, read or store in a briefcase or an office resource library.

HME Business is not just products and not just news, but a complete what-how-and-why package ready to help you navigate today’s evolving HME landscape.
Happy New Year!

Karen Cavallo
Group Publisher
HME Business

This article originally appeared in the January 2008 issue of HME Business.

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