What about enteral nutrition?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

One product category the National Home Infusion Association didn't address in its letter is enteral nutrition, which was included in Round 1. 

Enteral nutrition isn't simply a matter of dropping off cans of Ensure. Commonly called tube feeding, patients receive nutrition through either a syringe or pump that feeds into a tube. 

Many of these patients are very ill--Medicare only pays for the therapy when patients can't receive nutrition any other way--and managing their therapy can get complicated, says provider Kevin Nestrick, CEO Altius Healthcare in Prescott, Ariz. Several of the provider's locations are in Round 2 bid areas.

"They treat it like a grocery store," he said. "They think you just order and send it, and that's not the way it is supposed to be done."