Sunday, October 31, 2004

First Choice sells nursing division, keeps HME

AUGUSTA, Ga. - First Choice Medical sold its home care services operations to Louisville, Ky.-based ResCare in September. First Choice’s skilled nursing operations served more than 700 people from 16 locations in Georgia. That business will become part of Southern Home Care Services, a ResCare subsidiary that provides in-home services in Georgia and South Carolina. The transaction is expected to generate approximately $4.6 million in annual revenue for ResCare. First Choice retained its respiratory, home medical equipment , and home infusion divisions.

LCD requires certification for knee orthoses providers
WASHINGTON - The DMERC medical directors in September released a Local Coverage Determination/Policy article for knee orthoses. Data analysis and results from the Comprehensive Error Rate Testing (CERT) program demonstrated a need to develop a policy for these items, said Region D’s medical director Dr. Robert Hoover. In addition, the medical directors wished to apply less costly alternative to certain items. A major component of the draft policy requires ABC or BOC certification to provide custom fabricated orthoses, which “adds a level of protection for beneficiaries to ensure that they are receiving high quality products and services,” said Hoover. The comment period for the LCD ended in mid October.
American Healthways inks three-year diabetes deal

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - American Healthways in September entered a three-year agreement with Ashland, Ky.-based Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital. The hospital will provide the company’s hospital-based diabetes services. American Healthway’s in-patient component enables hospitals to address the special needs of patients with diabetes. Its outpatient component is designed to help individuals with diabetes develop and practice the self-management skills that will improve their health status and quality of life and reduce the risk of diabetes-related complications. Diabetes is the sixth leading cause of death by disease in Kentucky, affecting approximately one in every 10 adults, according to state government figures.