Category: Power wheelchairs
• Financial squeeze: The elimination of the first-month purchase option for power chairs has providers and manufacturers concerned that cash flow will be severely disrupted. Some vendors are offering financing programs to ease the pinch, but the situation illuminates the need for providers to find alternative revenue sources to keep income steady.
• Confusion continues: While error rates are reportedly dropping as CMS continues to provide information to physicians, clinicians and providers on the establishment of medical necessity for a power mobility device, the documentation requirements in effect since 2006 are still causing confusion. At issue is inconsistent application of information in pre- and post-pay audits and the subjectivity of medical necessity.
• Demand factor: Despite the added Medicare hoops, manufacturers say the power chair market remains viable because demand continues to be strong for power mobility products and reimbursement itself isn't shrinking. Once providers adjust to the new stratified format, they should continue to see the same volume of business, vendors say.