The Summit sessions


I just finished a wrap-up of the HME News Business Summit for the Newswire, but there’s still more I want to share.

It was that kind of event.

I mean, it was great to be in an environment with providers where they had the opportunity to learn from experts (about everything from healthcare reform to private equity to retail), brainstorm with their peers in small groups (on generating revenues, cutting costs and managing employee) and chatting up those experts and those peers on a river cruise and during a baseball game.

For me, there were so many ah-ha moments.

Here are a few from my notebook:

Speaker Ryan McDevitt spoke of an experiment he conducted with his internal marketing team. He took half of his team and gave them a 1-hour training presentation on how to sell supplies for CPAPs. He did not give the presentation to the other half of his team. These employees had the same opportunity for sale, the same work experience, and the same personality profile. Know what happened? The employees who received the training presentation made four times the number of sales. Still think training is something you can do only if you have time?

I really need to find out more about patient centered medical homes, which was mentioned during more than one session.

Speaker Everette James made it pretty clear that the HME industry has a long way to go toward having the data it needs about its cost effectiveness to change the minds of government officials who appropriate funds. As director of the Pitt Health Policy Institute, he’s interested in helping the industry find out how to do that.

Speaker Mindy Thompson-Banko told attendees that a woman who has a mastectomy spends about $400 a year on miscellaneous things like recovery camisoles—and they’re paid for in cash.

What happened to ActivStyle after it was acquired by a private equity firm? Speaker Jack Nestor said it went from generating $14 million in revenues and servicing half a dozen states to generating $55 million in revenues and servicing more than 40 states. How? Through organic growth, a direct response TV ad and four bolt-on acquisitions, including a catheter provider.

The PE panel discussed where a company has to be to attract interest. David Sturdee: $8 million to $9 million in EBITDA; Jack Nestor: $1 million to $5 million in EBITDA; Michael Holloway: $1.5 million to $2 million EBITDA.

I could go on.

If you attended the Summit, I hope your notebook is just as full.