One no-show, negative business pressures and Knights in Shining Armor


Take a gander at the five most read Rehab stories from for 2010:

•    “The Scooter Store pursues life outside of power mobility” (2,179 hits)

•    “Power wheelchair providers fight denials tooth and nail” (1,616)

•    “The Scooter Store: Coming to a town near you” (1,550)

•   “First-month purchase option: Vendors prepare to ease burden (1,429)

•    “Rehab providers rework employee salaries” (1,326)

Before I address what’s there, lets address what’s not there.

Well, there are no stories about the industry’s efforts to create a separate benefit for complex rehab. Don Clayback, executive director of NCART, and crew spent much of this year laying the groundwork for a separate benefit, including drafting a proposal paper and holding several teleconferences to discuss it with other stakeholders. Why didn’t it make the list? Is there not as much interest in the separate benefit because too few providers supply complex rehab?

I bet, though, with industry leaders working to introduce legislation to create a separate benefit this year, it will be the source of one, if not more, of the most read Rehab stories for 2011. Also driving the increased interest in complex rehab: Providers like The Scooter Store throwing their hats in the ring, and regional providers like National Seating and Mobility and United Seating & Mobility expanding their footprints in that market.

What is in the list are some of the negative business pressures that providers faced in 2010: dealing with a significant increase in the number of audits (and subsequent denials); dropping the first-month purchase option for standard power wheelchairs; and making changes to their businesses to reduce cost and improve efficiency.

What’s also in the list: Two stories on The Scooter Store.

Occasionally, we get some flack for writing stories about The Scooter Store. See the Edit Spread of the February issue for a letter to the editor in this vain, which states: “I continue to lose respect for your magazine when you portray the charlatans of the industry as some sort of Knights in Shining Armor. It seems you have difficulty calling a spade a spade."

Well, whether you agree with The Scooter Store’s business practices or not, there is a good number of readers who want to know what the provider is up to. In 2010, that included diversifying its product mix beyond power mobility and beefing up its brick-and-mortar presence.

Liz Beaulieu