Moving the HME Industry Forward

General Healthcare

Top Ten Stories of 2014

December 29, 2014

ATLANTA – Business owners typically prefer a steady and predictable economic environment, but HME providers are rarely so fortunate. Industry news did not disappoint with major happenings throughout the year—in the micro and macro sense. For example, the word “retail” continued to creep into many conversations, and a tragedy in New York has focused the world on the importance of good sleep.

It’s nearly impossible to narrow it down, but we chose the following 10 as the most important news items and/or trends of 2014. Perhaps 2015 will be a bit less exciting, but we doubt it.

#1
CMS Signals Intent to Expand CB Rates Beyond Current CBAs
WASHINGTON, DC – CMS intends to use single payment amounts (SPAs) from the competitive bidding program to adjust Medicare payment rates in areas outside the competitive bidding areas (CBAs). Click Here to read the full story. Click Here for additional analysis

#2
Binding Bids Legislation Introduced in Senate
WASHINGTON, DC – Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Ben Cardin (D-Md) have introduced the Medicare Competitive Bidding Improvement Act (MCBIA) of 2014—companion legislation to H.R. 4920. Much like the House bill introduced in June, the “short and simple” would help deter speculative bidding in Medicare contract auctions. Click Here for full story.

#3
Industry Converges in Atlanta for Medtrade
ATLANTA – The nation’s premiere HME event kicked off in Atlanta on Oct 20, 2014. Excitement ran high during the event which attracted thousands of providers and exhibitors. Click Here to read the full story

#4
Audits Under Heavy Scrutiny
WASHINGTON, DC – The anecdotes are numerous, and AAHomecare is hard at work collecting stories about how audits have personally affected HME beneficiaries and providers. The organization has also started a major, data-driven initiative to demonstrate the effects of audits. Click Here for full story.

#5
Retail Makes its Presence Known
ORLANDO, FL – The so-called “retail movement” has always been a part of the HME world, but the urgency is higher due to endless price pressures on Medicare via the competitive bidding program. Click Here to read the full story

#6
Driver in Bronx Train Tragedy Had Severe Sleep Apnea
NEW YORK – The driver of a train that derailed in late 2013 in New York City, killing four passengers, reportedly suffered from “severe sleep apnea.” The finding has led to mandatory sleep apnea testing for hundreds of New York train conductors. Ripple effects from the accident continue to spread. Click Here to read the full story

#7
Mal Mixon Retires
ELYRIA, OH – Invacare founder A. Malachi Mixon III, 74, retired as executive chairman of the Board of Directors, effective Dec 21, 2014. Mixon will continue his responsibilities as a non-employee member of the Board until the 2015 annual meeting when the Company will nominate him for one additional term after which he will reach the Board’s mandatory retirement age of 75.  Click Here to read the full story

#8
Friendlier Format at Medtrade Spring
LAS VEGAS – Time on the Expo floor will have very little conflict with educational sessions.

“Our educational sessions have always been top notch, and it’s true that attendees have occasionally felt conflicted about whether to attend a session or spend time on the expo floor,” explains Gaffney. “This year’s schedule has been adjusted to minimize overlap between Expo floor time and educational sessions.”  Click Here to read the full story

#9
CAMPS Signs Co-Location Agreement with Medtrade Spring 2015
LAS VEGAS – Members of the California Association of Medical Product Suppliers (CAMPS) can kill the proverbial two birds with one stone next year thanks to a new Medtrade Spring co-location agreement. The agreement combines the annual CAMPS meeting with Medtrade Spring, scheduled for March 30-April 1, 2015. Click Here to read the full story

#10
Medtrade Spring Builds Momentum
LAS VEGAS – Just shy of 2,000 providers showed up for Medtrade Spring, the Las Vegas version of the nation’s premiere HME trade show. Exhibitors reported steady traffic on the Mandalay Bay Convention Center floor, and educational sessions yielded solid attendance. Click Here to read the full story.