Q&A: Ken Fasse: Binson's ready for second go-round
Binson’s Home Health Care Centers is in rare company these days. The Center Line, Mich.-based provider is one of only nine to be awarded a national mail-order contract for diabetes supplies that starts July 1. HME News spoke recently with Ken Fasse, executive vice president and COO, about what Binson’s learned from the first round of the program and how much it expects its business to grow.
HME News: Were you surprised that CMS cut the number of mail-order contracts by half?
Ken Fasse: No, quite honestly that is what we were expecting. CMS was originally going to bid the diabetic supply category on a regional basis, prior to moving to a national bid. The regional bid was bypassed when the CB program was delayed. Thus, the first round mail order bid became a national bid and likely resulted in less capacity being allocated per bidder to provide more “access.” We expected the re-bid to result in fewer mail-order suppliers with more capacity allocated to each.
HME: Did you expect the bid pricing to come in as low as it did?
Fasse: The fees settled within the range we expected, though on the lower end of that range. Incremental volume and improved acquisition costs, combined with improvements and efficiencies that have been gained over the course of the last three years or so will serve to make this work for Binson’s.
HME: What are some lessons learned from the previous round?
Fasse: We had to become highly efficient and accurate in all of our processes from front to back—intake, documentation, fulfillment, claims submission and accounts receivable management. We had to develop a customer service team who became highly proficient in coordinating services for beneficiaries across the country. We have to closely manage the products we offer and related market share requirements for our costs to be in line with our bid metrics. We expect to increase our patient census by upward of 25% or more.