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Repairs: Group finalizes highest certification

Repairs: Group finalizes highest certification

WATERLOO, Iowa - The Durable Medical Equipment Repair and Training Group (DMERT Group) expects to roll out its “train the trainer” program in January.

The program will be the foundation of the group's Level 3 certification for repair techs who are able to teach in community colleges or any other approved training venue.

“We're trying to create a system where we have highly technical people working on CRT equipment so we don't have as many repairs and we don't have as much cost in the system,” said Greg Packer, vice president of U.S. Rehab and secretary of the DMERT Group Oversight Board of Directors. “We're starting to gain steam.”

DMERT Group, a collaboration between U.S. Rehab, VGM Education and FIOS DME Repair Training, already offers Level 1 and Level 2 certifications for techs repairing basic medical equipment and complex rehab wheelchairs, respectively.

To achieve Level 3 certification, repair techs who have already achieved Level 1 or Level 2 certification will take both an online theory exam and a live audited exam.

“We're duplicating me in other locations,” said Matthew Macpherson, an ATP and national tech trainer for U.S. Rehab, who is also director of FIOS and chairman of the DMERT board. “They'll be contracted by FIOS to do the exams on behalf of the DMERT Group. This will allow us to get exams out on time and better meet demand.”

About 60 repair techs have communicated interest in achieving Level 3 certification, the group says.

“We already have 30 techs who have taken the online exam and are ready to take the practical exam,” Macpherson said.

The Level 3 certification is timely, in light of the Office of Inspector General's recent decision to add a review of PMD repairs to its work plan, the group says.

“I feel like as this gets more evaluated, they're going to start looking at the skill level of the person doing the repairs,” Macpherson said. “It may be the same repair and we may agree it should take X amount of time, but why did this tech take twice as long? We're trying to get ahead of that.”


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