Griffin achieves 30 years through trial and error

Friday, November 22, 2013

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – To survive 30 years in the HME business, you have to be willing to change, says provider Bill Griffin. 

“The industry demands it,” said Griffin, president of Griffin Home Health Care. “The key is being flexible.”

Griffin Home Health Care, which celebrated its 30th anniversary in October, started in the corner of a drugstore, but it now comprises two locations serving 16 counties in the Charlotte area. The provider offers a wide array of products and has contracts with all major insurances.

That diversification is key, says Griffin. 

“We’ve been proactive and tried not to put all of our eggs in one basket,” he said. 

Griffin was an early adopter of both state licensure and accreditation. However, not all of Griffin’s efforts to stay ahead of the curve have been fruitful.

“I’ve made some mistakes,” he said. “We tried to run a transportation business—taking people to the doctor, hairdresser and grocery store. The insurance policy we needed to do that ate us alive.”

The important thing, Griffin said, is to have the right attitude when plans don’t work out. 

“Admit you were wrong, regroup, and move onto the next,” he said.

Bill Griffin’s son, Richie Griffin, vice president, says Griffin Home Health Care will survive another 30 years, but he says changes to competitive bidding are needed.

“I’m excited to continue my father’s legacy, but, unless there are changes, beneficiaries are going to suffer,” he said. “Our business has never been about commodities; it’s been about care. Maybe once the people making decisions need HME for loved ones, they’ll see how much of an asset we are.”