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CMNs, COVID and the Dunkin’ run

CMNs, COVID and the Dunkin’ run

From the moment I open my eyes in the morning, I have one goal: coffee. This is normal any day of the year, but on Cape Cod, getting coffee from Dunkin Donuts is a competitive sport that requires getting keys, wallet and shoes lined up the night before, getting up extra early to try and beat the lines, and dodging horrible drivers (hey, it’s Massachusetts) in the small parking lot, all for the magic elixir that keeps me going.

And I’ve needed that fuel to keep up with all the happenings in HME this summer, most recently, the proposal to drop the CMN for oxygen.

“What’s a CMN?” my mom asked recently as she perused the latest issue of HME News (not her usual reading material).

I gave her the run down, as told to me by the providers who I’ve talked to about the proposal. By and large, they are for it, but as always, the devil is in the details.

“It’s hard enough to get physicians to fill out the CMN correctly,” says Regina Gillispie, president and owner of Best Home Medical in Barboursville, W.Va.  “But how do they do notes and follow-up notes? They may mention oxygen, but may not put the exact wording, and where does that leave us? It’s subjective until they give more guidance, because the audits have been so crazy.” 

Speaking of medical necessity, Mom has finally agreed to get her COVID vax, which, with the totally unnecessary resurgence across the country, will have me breathing a whole lot easier.

COVID is on the minds of HME providers as well, as they start prepping for increased oxygen setups amid ongoing equipment and staffing shortages.

“With the current labor shortage, the uptick in oxygen referrals due to the delta variant has strained an already strained delivery system,” said Lee Guay, Director, UNC Homecare Specialists in Durham, N.C., in his response to a recent HME Newspoll.

I’m on vacation next week, so if you need to vent about NCDs, COVID or coffee, contact Liz.


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