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They say crime doesn't pay. In this case, it appears to have bought a yacht.

January 25, 2021Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

I received a press release last week from the DOJ about the latest news in Medicare fraud involving, what else, braces! Juan Camilo Perez Buitrago and two of his employees submitted more than $109 million in false claims for arm, back, knee and shoulder braces. (nothing to see here). But it’s the details that really made me say, WTF? You see, as part of his scheme, Buitrago had the employees, Jessica Jones and Elizabeth Putulin, list his wife, mother and yacht captain as directors for...

braces, medicare fraud, orthotics


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On the Editor's Desk

Prial's prediction

December 15, 2020Liz Beaulieu, Editor

Shelly Prial will be remembered for a number of things, including being the “show ambassador” for Medtrade. I’ll remember him for the bow ties – and his passion for telehealth. When he was still with us, I fielded calls from Prial, sometimes weekly, about how teleahealth was the wave of the future and how HME providers needed to carve out a niche for themselves in this new market. This is from a Q&A we did with Prial way back in 2006: HME News: Where can HME providers...

remote patient monitoring, Shelly Prial, telehealth


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The new normal? Wear a mask and carry on

November 16, 2020Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

TV shows have begun having their fall premieres and as I settled in recently to watch a few (Chicago PD, Grey's Anatomy, Rise Up), I found myself transported more than once back to the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, when so much was unknown and scary, and yet, seemed so temporary. When I bailed on my office March 18 with the speed of one abandoning a city falling to invading troops, I honestly thought I'd be back in a week or 10 days. I'm sure most of us did. I think we all know how that...

coronavirus outbreak, HOme medical equipment


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On the Editor's Desk

Count the bids

November 6, 2020Liz Beaulieu, Editor

The big news story right now is the election and the herculean efforts by various states to count the unprecedented number of absentee and mail-in ballots, a task that stretched out well beyond the Nov. 3 vote. The chants - count the votes by some, and stop the count by others - got me to thinking about CMS's recent decision to drop 13 product categories from Round 2021 of competitive bidding. When the news broke, there was a first wave of relief - the industry had been lobbying CMS to pause Round...

competitive bidding


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On the Editor's Desk

The T word

October 12, 2020Liz Beaulieu, Editor

It wasn't intentional, but nearly every session at the virtual HME News Business Summit in September stressed the importance of providers leveraging technology to not only improve care but also make their businesses more efficient and profitable. Sure, technology creeps up at the Summit every year and it's often the focus of a session or two, but never has it so dominated our entire event. There were sessions at the Summit that I knew would focus on technology, like the keynote by Dr. Jacob Warren...

e-prescribing, HME News Business Summit, remote monitoring, telehealth


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On the Editor's Desk

Chip, chip, chip

September 18, 2020Liz Beaulieu, Editor

Earlier this month, Managing Editor Theresa Flaherty and I were trying to piece together the latest developments in reimbursement relief and we were both getting pretty frustrated. AAHomecare announced recently that the industry's champions in the House of Representatives had introduced H.R. 8158, a bill that would eliminate the budget neutrality requirement for home oxygen therapy. The association says the House Energy and Commerce Committee requested that the provision be peeled away from the other...

Advocacy, associations, bid relief, budget neutrality requirement, lobbying


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Guest Blog

The new reality of patient-as-payer

September 18, 2020HME News Staff

LillianPhelpsSteveIngel.jpg In theory, health care consumerism is a straight-forward idea: Shifting costs to consumers, typically in the form of high-deductible health plans (HDHPs), gives them an incentive to make informed decisions about the health care services they purchase. In practice, consumerism represents a significant challenge to providers' bottom lines. A recent report reveals that for 74% of providers, patient collections take over a month. Further, 66% of providers said patient...

health care consumerism


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Blogging from the beach: The freshman 15

August 26, 2020Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

After weeks of receiving email notifications from LinkedIn, I learned the reason why when I logged onto the company Slack this week. August 25 marked my 15-year anniversary with HME News, according to the impeccable records of the Capable Erika. Fifteen years! I'm never sure whether to celebrate or commiserate when someone hits such a lengthy tenure. That first week, I had no idea what I had done, what I was doing, what the heck was a rollator, and what the future held, either for me or this strange...

HME news, HOme medical equipment


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On the Editor's Desk

Chaos meets opportunity at the Summit

August 17, 2020Liz Beaulieu, Editor

There has arguably never been a more chaotic time in the HME industry. The industry already had Round 2021 of national competitive bidding on the docket for this year, in terms of CMS announcing single payment amounts this summer and contract suppliers this fall. But it's been the external pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic that have turned even our own little sector of health care upside down. The two together have made the industry spin. Will CMS pause the bid program? Even if it does pause the...

HME News Business Summit, thought leadership


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Dispatches from the dining room: Another stupid question? Everyone's a critic

August 12, 2020Theresa Flaherty, Managing Editor

Every month HME News sends out a newspoll to gauge provider opinion on timely issues affecting the HME industry. Some poll questions are better than others, but we always try to put thought into them. It's harder than you might think. Every once in awhile, while scrolling through the responses readers are kind enough to submit, we'll get a comment like this: “Another stupid question.” The month's stupid question was about providers' take on the COVID-19 pandemic: What is the pandemic...

coronavirus outbreak, HOme medical equipment


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