2006 HME Excellence winners flex their muscles

Sunday, September 24, 2006

ATLANTA - Solid growth numbers, resolute emphasis on quality and dedication to serving their communities catapulted this year's group of winners to the HME Excellence Awards podium last week at Medtrade.

Topping the list in their respective categories were Erie, Pa.-based Blackburn's for Rehab; Memphis, Tenn.-based Methodist Alliance Home Medical Equipment for HME and Lebanon, N.H.-based Keene Medical Products for Respiratory. Tallies from the judging panel showed a very close vote in all categories.

In giving the nod to Blackburn's, panel members said the company scored well on several key criteria, including financial performance, community outreach and marketing efforts. "They are a phenomenal company," one judge remarked.

Methodist, first runner-up in 2005, took home the big hardware this year due to strong financials, a continuous improvement plan and community outreach. The company's dedication to helping victims of hurricanes Katrina and Rita made a tremendous impression on the judges.

"Their response to Katrina was a big thing--it's what tipped the scale in their favor for me," one judge said.

Likewise, Keene earned runner-up status in last year's contest for Respiratory. In leapfrogging to the top, judges cited the company's steady growth rate, quality improvement plan and community involvement. As if to reiterate the purpose of the award, one judge stated plainly: "This is an excellent company."

The runners-up in each category also demonstrated high standards of operation and received their props as well.

First runners-up are: Newington, Conn.-based Hudson Home Health Care (Rehab); Winchester, Va-based Valley Home Care (HME) and Harrisburg, Pa.-based CressCare Medical (Respiratory).

Spokane, Wash.-based Inland Medical & Rehab (Rehab), Harrisburg, Pa-based Central Medical Equipment (HME) and Kingsport, Tenn.-based Resp-I-Care received second runner-up plaques.