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Leaders approach challenges with compassion, grit

Leaders approach challenges with compassion, grit

YARMOUTH, Maine – What drives this year’s HME Woman of the Year finalists? 

“At a fundamental level, (leadership) is compassion and care,” said Trisha Bailey, CEO of Medical Hotspots Inc./Bailey’s Medical, one of the four finalists. “Compassion for my staff, so they can extend that to people in which we serve. By doing so, it enables a better work environment, it enables a better outlook. It also generates significant benefits for the organization and on the financial end, as well.” 

Bailey joined 2021 HME Woman of the Year Katie Stevens, CEO of Reliable Medical Supply, Neidi Mack, vice president for ancillary services, Prism Health Care Services/The Alden Network, and Victoria Peterson, administrator, RespMed, for a virtual discussion on leadership hosted by VGM on Dec. 16.  

Compassion is what compels the finalists – and the industry as a whole, they say – to dig in their heels to provide quality care. 

“I feel as though we are a special breed and the folks attracted to complex rehab or respiratory or HME generally, are, almost to a person, passionate, creative and full of perseverance and the right amount of grit,” said Stevens. “It makes for an industry full of people who invigorate me.” 

Grit is a necessity, they say, as the industry faces unprecedented supply chain challenges and increased costs. 

“We are in desperate need of a unified voice to our congressional representatives to really escalate and elevate the importance of prioritizing medical equipment to HME providers, as well as anyone in the health care sector,” Mack said. 

The release of the DMEPOS Final Rule and a meaningful adjustment to stagnant reimbursement are critically important to ensure HME providers will be able to continue quality care, and that won’t happen unless providers speak up, they say. 

“If we had better education and were better able to reach out to our elected officials and explain the challenges, they would be on the spot to help us fix these problems,” Peterson said. “Where we really need to focus our strategy is on developing those relationships in all levels of government and making sure they understand what it is that we do and the services that we provide and that we are able to quantify how it impacts the patient.”


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