No AWP, no dice

Saturday, May 31, 2003

NEWBURGH, N.Y. — The lack of an any-willing-provider umbrella in New York state is shoving a number of HME providers into the rain as the state’s Empire BlueCross BlueShield con-solidates its provider base.

A May 1 contraction reduced Empire’s HME supplier base from 28 vendors to 18. Although Consolidated Medical will retain its O&P business, losing the HME portion will have a substantial impact on Consolidated Medical’s top line. President Doug Crana estimates that between 10-15% of his business has been generated by the Empire contract.

Crana is casting for alternative strategies to retain his Empire business and maintain ready access to HME for his patient base. The nearest full-line HME location to Consolidated is Apria, 30 miles distant.

“Now patients are told they have to go some distance away,” said Crana. “Here comes the scenario that probably generated [any-willing-provider] statutes in the first place.” HME