Just twi-it

Monday, September 28, 2009

PLYMOUTH, Mass. – Twitter, the real-time short messaging service, isn’t a foreign word to the people behind Therap-Ease.

The Plymouth, Mass.-based provider began twittering over the summer, giving it another way to notify and educate the community and beyond on various issues (username: Therap_Ease).

“At first, we wondered how it would help us, but we decided just the exposure would help us,” said Diane Miller, office supervisor, who’s idea it was to start twittering. “I was at a meet-and-greet recently with other local companies, and as I entered, I said, ‘Hi, I’m Diane from Therap-Ease,’ and the woman at the door said, ‘You follow me on Twitter.’”

In September, Therap-Ease had 216 followers—mostly other healthcare companies and organizations like the Home Care Alliance of Mass (username: HCA_of_Mass). HME-related followers include the Accreditation Commission for HealthCare (username: achc).

The person behind Therap-Ease’s twitters: Rachael Oliveira, an office assistant. She estimates she twitters every day, sometimes as often as a couple of times an hour.

Oliveira often twitters a “Medicare Coverage Clue.” On Sept. 24, it was: “A heavy duty walker may be covered for patients who qualify for a standard walker and weight more than 300 pounds.” She also twitters links to relevant articles from Medicare, AAHomecare and others.

“We’re just trying to help people any way we can and spread the word,” Oliveira said.

Twittering has spurred “a whole e-media makeover” at Therap-Ease, Miller said.

“We’re also in the process of revamping our Web site,” she said. “The next step: A Facebook page.”

Therap-Ease provides a full-line of HME. Its sister company, Access Mobility Solutions, provides grab bars, stair lifts, vertical platforms and ramp systems.