On the road: Dan Smith seeks members in lower 48
WASHINGTON - Dan Smith has spent the last year traveling the country three weeks out of every month, working to recruit new AAHomecare members. He recently spoke with HME News about why providers should make room in their budgets for AAHomecare.
HME News: The director of membership sales and marketing is a new position for AAHomecare. How did you get into it?
Dan Smith: I was an RTS provider in the ’80s, I was a manufacturer in the ’90s and I recruited providers for The MED Group for 12 years. You could come shake me at 3 o’clock in the morning and ask me a question and I know it. It’s in my DNA. So this was a good fit.
HME: What are you hearing from providers on the road?
Smith: Even though we go out to all the state shows, people just think of us being in D.C. A lot of providers are taken aback—in a good way—like, “Here’s this guy in my office asking me questions and listening to my needs.”
HME: What are the big issues for them?
Smith: With competitive bidding, there’s a lot of doom and gloom, anxiety, pressure, downsizing, revenue, cash flow—all that fun stuff. A lot of this is listening to them, understanding their revenue mix, their product mix, what the tea leaves are saying to them, what they are going to do about the bid.
HME: Where does AAHomecare come in?
Smith: Honestly, logic says the bigger we are—we, the industry, we, the lobby—the harder it is for Medicare to take your money. And the smaller we are, the easier it is for Medicare to take your money.
HME: Are you able to recruit new members, or are providers finding it hard to come up with membership fees?
Smith: Both, and because of the downward pressure on the revenues, it’s a little more challenging. It’s an unusual dynamic, because the harder it is for the providers out there, the more apparent the need for our efforts is.