Providers shine on silver anniversaries

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A pair of New England providers celebrated their silver anniversaries this summer by giving back to their communities.

Employees at Waterbury, Conn.-based Health Complex Medical have been involved in a variety of service initiatives, kicking the year off with a penguin plunge to raise money for the Special Olympics. Other activities range from participating in a March of Dimes Walk to filling backpacks with school supplies for needy children, said Jack Hogan, vice president and one of the company founders.

"Even though it would be easier, we didn't want to just to write a check," said Hogan.

The company is so committed to community involvement that it's an agenda item at monthly staff meetings. Other initiatives may include a continuous food drive rather than one big collection during the holidays.

"We don't need to do it in a grand way," said Hogan. "These are tough times to reach out to your staff and ask them to spend extra money."

Health Complex Medical, which relies on respiratory for 95% of its revenues, has grown to three locations and 60 employees. It serves the entire state.

"My partner and I have built our success on (our employee) infrastructure," he said. "We employ people in these communities and it's our way to give back."

Herron & Smith

Bernadine Herron, owner and founder of Hooksett, N.H.-based Herron & Smith, also looked close to home when it came time to decide how to mark 25 years in business. The provider, which earns about 50% of its revenues from complex rehab, is considering a $2,500 donation to the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) or possibly contributing in some way to one of the association's local fundraisers.

"We looked at the national telethon, but we wanted to focus on New Hampshire," said Herron. "We work closely with the (local) MDA in terms of referrals. This builds our image and gives back in terms of a thank you."

Herron & Smith services the entire state, plus areas along three bordering states from one location. The company also offers DME, respiratory and women's health products.

Herron, a nurse, attributes much of the company's success to being a woman-owned and operated business--still somewhat of an industry rarity.

"I think there is a sensitivity and a compassion and an understanding to determine not only the immediate need of the diagnosis but also forecast what changes might occur in their health status in the future," she said. "We bring more than just the equipment. We help the client see their situation from a more holistic view."