January 2008


Publisher's Note: Changing Times

Welcome to the premiere issue of HME Business, a natural evolution of Home Health Products. It’s 2008, and the HME landscape is a lot different than it was in 1992, when we began publishing a product tabloid. 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.


2008 Funding Forecast

Competitive Bidding, First-Month Purchase Options for PWC & a New Medicare Program are Issues to Watch

Medicare Proposes Payment for CPAPs Based on Home Sleep Testing

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced Dec. 14 that it is proposing to change its national coverage determination (NCD) to include payment for CPAP equipment when the sleep apnea diagnosis is based on results from home sleep testing (HST).

Editors At Large: A.R.T. Group’s Kids ROCK Active Chair

By Laurie Watanabe

Kids need to move. Movement is the way they learn, the way they gain strength, the way they explore their environments and grow, physically and intellectually. That’s true for children in wheelchairs, too.

Product Premier: Fastrack’s New MSO

By Laurie Watanabe

Member Service Group Touts e-Solutions, Purchasing Power… & No Fees

Optimizing Your Operations: How a Wholesaler Could Save You Money

By Steven E. Cole

As part of their efforts to streamline operations for the reduced reimbursement/competitive bid environment, many successful DME suppliers are reducing the number of vendors from which they buy. As part of your action plan for early 2008, you may want to investigate how consolidating the purchasing of a wide assortment of products through a wholesale distributor can help you serve more customers more profitably.

Business Goals for 2008

From Operations to Accreditation to Cost Control, Get Started Now on 2008 Business Plans

Accrediting Organizations for DMEPOS

Funding Update: TriCenturion Releases 1st Quarter K0823

Power Chair Review Results -- TriCenturion, the Jurisdiction A/B DME Program Safeguard Contractor, announced that during the first quarter of its widespread pre-payment review, it denied 89.75 percent of K0823 power chair claims in Jurisdiction A and 88.73 percent of K0823 claims in Jurisdiction B.

Top 10 Product Niches to Watch for 2008

When we set out to find the top 10 HME niches to watch in 2008, our goal was to uncover the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth — which means these 10 product categories (listed in random order) were chosen for a variety of reasons: In-home sleep testing; power chairs; oxygen; lighter automotive accessibility; CPAPs; home and environmental accessibility; pulse oximeters; manual wheelchairs; retail/cash sales; and bariatrics.

Fastrack’s New MSO

Member Service Group Touts e-Solutions, Purchasing Power… & No Fees

Graham-Field’s John Bunn DigiO2 Finger Pulse Oximeter

By Elisha Bury

For years now, diabetes educators have touted the power of glucose monitors to help people with diabetes manage their condition. So, it only makes sense that a similar device for oxygen users should make its way to the forefront.


Wachovia Survey Shows Sleep Revenue Will Grow; CPAP Pricing Is Stable, But NCB May Hurt Reimbursement Rates

The sleep market is still going strong, and CPAP pricing is currently stable, but reimbursement rates for HME suppliers could be hurt by the upcoming national competitive bidding (NCB) program, say the results of the latest Wachovia HME Sleep & Wound Care Survey. Findings also included expected growth in the negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) market.

Fighting Back: The Industry Responds to Media Coverage of a Medicare Oxygen “Boon”

The HME industry, and the oxygen niche in particular, suffered a tough couple of weeks in the mainstream media, as The New York Times printed what was widely regarded by the industry as a derogatory, politically motivated article on Nov. 30. Then “NBC Nightly News” aired a two-part special report on Medicare fraud on Dec. 10 and 11.

CMS Announces Accreditation Deadline (with Exceptions)

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have set the deadline for DME suppliers to be accredited in order to bill Medicare Part B: Sept. 30, 2009. The announcement came at a Special Open Door Forum on Dec. 19.

HME Business Podcast