Rotech gets VA boost

Friday, April 26, 2013

WASHINGTON – On the heels of its announcement that it planned to file for bankruptcy protection, Rotech Healthcare announced that it had won a $68.3 million contract from Veterans Affairs.

Under the one-year contract, which has four one-year options, Rotech will provide home oxygen and respiratory services for medical center locations in Biloxi and Jacksonville, Miss.; Houston; Fayetteville and Little Rock, Ark.; Muskogee, Okla.; New Orleans; and Oklahoma City.

Working with the VA is a smart move for any provider, says Bob Fary, and the contract Rotech won is “one of the bigger ones” out there.

“The VA is a good payer,” said Fary, vice president of strategic alliances for Inogen.

Rotech, with its infrastructure, has an advantage when it comes to VA contracts, Fary says. 

“Price plays a part, but you also have to prove you have the ability to cover that region,” he said. 

Still, smaller providers have a shot at VA contracts, too, says provider Craig Rae, who has VA contracts in the Salisbury, N.C. area. Although it’s a lengthy bidding process, it’s worth it, he says. 

“It’s a thousand times easier to do business with the VA than Medicare,” said Rae, owner of Penrod Home Medical. “When they order, they give you a credit card number. There are no audits, and, unlike Medicare, you don’t have to jump through hoops to get claims approved.”