'Real people' make important HME allies

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Recruiting the users of home medical equipment to help out with the industry’s lobbying efforts is essential for ensuring that legislators and agency heads hear a different voice in the arguments against Medicare competitive bidding and other government initiatives. Medtrade organizers realize the increasingly vital value consumers bring to the HME industry’s message and are expanding their role with the Wheel:Life Community Expo and Welcome Reception on Wednesday, Oct. 9, from 4-6 p.m.

“The trade organizations do a great job of looking out for the interests of the industry, but working closely with consumer organizations has never been more important,” said Kevin Gaffney, group show director, Medtrade. “Consumer groups represent the patients who rely on our products. Legislators need to realize that their policies affect real people, many of whom are in vulnerable situations.”

The expo was created from a partnership between Medtrade and online community Wheel:Life to promote consumer advocacy and patient choice. Consumers, caregivers and clinicians are invited to attend the event, which will feature:

• A complimentary one-day Medtrade Expo Pass valid for the full-day event.

• A consumer-focused educational program on locally-available products and health services.

• Meet-and-greet reception with complimentary food and beverages.

“Wheel:Life exists to improve life and lifestyles for everyone who uses a wheelchair, and we are honored to help introduce the fantastic resources and programs available through Medtrade to the community that we serve,” said Wheel:Life Director Lisa Wells.

During the Wheel:Life educational program, notable disability advocates and wheelchair users will take the stage to answer consumer and clinical questions through a moderated speaker panel.

“Organizations such as Wheel:Life are getting that message out to Capitol Hill and they are helping both  consumers and professionals find appropriate solutions in the process,” Gaffney added.