Who says there's no good news?

Thursday, May 31, 2007

With the trials and tribulations that go along with the seemingly unending supply of challenges providers now face, good news seems in short supply. But if you dig a little, you'll see that's not the case, say a number of industry insiders.
"We're seeing clients who are doing great," said Spencer Kay, president of software company Fastrack Healthcare Solutions. "And you know how I know they are doing great? They are buying additional modules. That means they are hiring more people because their business is growing."
Over the past month, HME News went hunting for good news, something for providers to hang a little hope on. Here's some of what we found.
Market forces
"It's a tough time for providers," acknowledged John Frank, Respironics' vice president, general manager home respiratory care.
But over the years, when faced with adversity, providers have demonstrated a remarkable resiliency, the ability to adapt to changes. They will this time, as well, he said.
Lisa Bargmann agreed.
"I think competitive bidding will force companies to reinvent themselves and run a better business," said the president of Homecare Collection Services.
Don't forget dedication, said Larry Rice, CEO of In Home Products.
"There are still caring providers who want to stay in the industry," he said. "The people who are dedicated are going to find a way--they are not going away."
John Peterson, director of sales for cylinder manufacturer Cramer Decker, called accreditation "a good thing."
"It forces people to do the right thing," he said. "It will weed out the bad apples and create a level playing field."
Additionally, it forces providers to run their companies efficiently, which should improve their finances, he said.
"Many companies (now) have credit problems because they don't run their books correctly, manage income statements and cash flow," he said.
Take control
In looking at the current state of affairs, Ed Radke takes a philosophical approach.
"Whenever there is turmoil, there is opportunity for those willing to change their business models and take advantage of the opportunity," said the vice president of sales and marketing at SeQual Technologies.
While providers can't ignore reimbursement decreases, they have little if any direct control over pricing. They can, however, take control over how they run their businesses.
"The new technology is here now and has lowered the cost of doing business," he said. "That is a good thing."