• Study finds fundamental flaws in new Medicare bidding program

    From: Memphis Business Journal

    Cole Epley

    Come July 1, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will implement a new process through which businesses that service and sell durable medical equipment and supplies will compete for Medicare business.

    The program is designed to foster more competition and, in turn, influence more cost-effective supplies and service for Medicare beneficiaries.

    But local businesses in the space have already sounded off on the so-called competitive bidding program — one of whom told MBJ the program is a “de facto way of not providing services” — and study results published in the May issue of the Quarterly Journal of Economics are likely to add fuel to those entities’ opposition of the program.

  • Rep. Price drops MPP bill

    From: HME News

    WASHINGTON – Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., on April 24 reintroduced a bill to replace competitive bidding with the HME industry’s market-pricing program (MPP).

    Out of the gate, H.R. 1717 has 25 co-sponsors—nearly double the 13 co-cosponsors the previous bill had when it was introduced in September. That bill eventually gained 94 co-sponsors.

    The second phase of competitive bidding is set to kick off July 1 in 91 cities. Single payment amounts for Round 2, announced Jan. 30, are, on average, 45% below the current fee schedule.

  • Providers try to make sense of it all

    From: HME News

    by: Theresa Flaherty

    YARMOUTH, Maine – From providers getting contracts to service areas located thousands of miles away to providers unprepared to service contracts in their local areas, sources predict problems aplenty when Round 2 goes into effect July 1.

    “It’s going to be a nightmare,” said Mike Marnhout, owner/president of Lexington, Ky.-based Bluegrass Medical, which received contracts in Round 1 but not in Round 2.

    Since the list of contract suppliers was released April 9, providers have been doing some analysis of their own. And they don’t like what they see.

  • Mail order contracts: Expect big to get bigger

    From: HME News

    by: Theresa Flaherty

    BALTIMORE – CMS released a list of 18 contract suppliers for the national mail-order program for diabetes supplies April 9, but it’s a list that could look different when July 1 rolls around, say industry sources.

    “Several of the companies have been put up for sale, and we know of one or two that have already been sold,” said Tom Milam, an industry consultant and former provider.

  • DMEPOS Contract Suppliers Announced: National Mail Order Diabetic Testing Supplies and Round 2

    From: CMS

    CMS has announced the contract suppliers for Round 2 and the national mail-order program of the Medicare Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics and Supplies (DMEPOS) Competitive Bidding Program.

    A list of contract supplier names is available at www.dmecompetitivebid.com. Contract supplier locations for each product category in each competitive bidding area can be found in the Supplier Directory at www.medicare.gov/supplier.

    For additional information:

    New Name for CBIC Ombudsmen

  • CMS’ Financial Standards in Action

    From: Orlando Sentinal

    Rotech files Chapter 11 bankruptcy to rework nearly $545 million in debt

    By Richard Burnett

    Orlando-based Rotech Healthcare Inc. has declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization to rework its nearly $545 million in debt, the company said Monday.

    Rotech officials said the action is expected to stabilize its balance sheet and clear the way to return to profitability. It lost $12.4 million on revenue of $114 million during the third quarter, the most recent results it has reported.

  • Competitive bidding: What manufacturers will and won’t do

    From: HME News

    by: Liz Beaulieu

    YARMOUTH, Maine – When it comes to surviving competitive bidding, HME providers have a big cheerleader in manufacturers.

    That’s because if providers sell fewer products or go out of business as a result of the program, it hurts manufacturers, too. Several manufacturers contacted by HME News say they made it through Round 1 relatively unscathed, but Round 2, which is scheduled to go into effect in 91 cities on July 1, may be another story.