Negative Nancy or sunshine Sally? How about something in between.


I just got off the phone with a provider, who I had called to see if he was doing anything that might make some news for us. He started talking about nothing specific, but I was typing notes, as I usually do, and he asked, are you typing? Then he asked, are you quoting me for a story? I told him I wasn't working on a specific story at this point, but I always take notes, because, otherwise, I wouldn't remember anything. He said, "I don't want to be quoted in a story in HME News. All of your stories are negative. Look at this week's NewsWire. The only positive story is on H.R. 3790."

Then, coincidentally, a co-worker came over to my cube and said, "You know, if I were looking to get into the HME business, I wouldn't after reading this week's NewsWire."

That got me to thinking. Is HME News a negative Nancy?

So I reviewed this week's NewsWire:
*H.R. 3790: With 203 co-sponsors, industry eyes next step
*Providers, CMS officials debate new maintenance rules for oxygen
*OIG: NPI delay, fraud may be connected
*Audits increase tension between providers, referral sources
*N.H. providers accuse Gulf South of going direct; not so, company says
*In brief: Lawmakers target fraud, AAH creates CPAP task force

I'll admit: It's a bit of a bummer.

But then I reviewed the May issue, which we just sent to the printers last week. We have stories in our Providers section, for example, like "Seeley's script for success" and "A wave of activity at Home Health Depot." Reviewing older issues, I came to the conclusion that we have stories like these in the print issue pretty consistently.

Maybe there are more "negative" stories in the NewsWire each week vs. the print issue each month because these stories are usually legislative or regulatory driven? No news is usually good news these days, when it comes to Congress and CMS, right? But aren't these "negative" stories important to you and your livelihood? Don't you want to know about a new provision or rule that will have an impact on you, even if it's a negative impact?

Please tell me you wouldn't rather live in a bubble where the only thing that happens in the HME industry is warm and fuzzy.

Still, maybe we should make more of an effort to also include some positive stories in the NewsWire. I realize there's a lot of negative things going on out there (and usually we write about them after providers complain about them—who's really the negative Nancy?) and I realize we don't want to be sunshine Sally, but maybe we could work to be something in between.

Liz Beaulieu


Interesting. I've been reading HME News for years and never thought you were gratuitously negative. The news is what it is. It happens. You report it. Now excuse me while I go read some nice happy stories about competitive bidding.

[...] We got some heat not too long ago for our NewsWire being too “negative.” Now this. [...]