In brief: Blackburn wins Woman of the Year, judges flip for Flyp

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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

ATLANTA – Industry veteran Georgie Blackburn was announced as the 2018 HME Woman of the Year at Medtrade on Tuesday morning. She was selected among four finalists to win the award, which honors a woman for implementing new business processes, participating in industry advocacy, improving the lives of patients and getting involved in her community. Blackburn is vice president of government relations and legislative affairs for Pittsburgh-based Blackburn’s. She has served on the board of directors of the Pennsylvania Association of Medical Equipment Supplies and the executive board of AAHomecare. Currently, she serves on the Complex Rehab and Mobility Council for AAHomecare, the board of directors for NCART and the board of directors of her local Chamber of Commerce. She is also a deacon in her church. Blackburn joins Dr. Kirsten Davin, president of Precision Seating Solutions, and Barbara Smith, CEO of Healthline Medical Equipment as an HME Woman of the Year. The award is sponsored by VGM Group.

Judges flip for Flyp
ATLANTA – The Flyp nebulizer from Convexity Scientific came in first place in this year’s Innovative HME Retail Product Awards. The DFree from Triple W, a wearable device that can track the progression of bladder movements using non-invasive ultrasonic sensors; and the Jazzy Air 2 scooter from Pride Mobility won second and third place, respectively. Representatives from seven companies made their case to attendees and judges, who voted on their top three choices. “It was a difficult choice,” said Maria Markusen, director of development, VGM Retail, and one of three judges. “The presentations were really good, and all of the seven finalists could be paired with other items to grow revenues.” The companies were judged on how they contribute to quality of life and how they would work in a retail environment. They were also judged on the marketing support provided to providers, innovation, functionality, quality/durability, aesthetics/style, ease of retail set up, and pricing. The awards are sponsored by HomeCare magazine.

$5K up for grabs at Medtrade
ATLANTA – Medrtade will once again have a closing reception this year that involves a $5,000 giveaway. To qualify, attendees must receive game cards that must be stamped by five exhibitors (WellSky, AAHomecare, CareCredit, EVENup and PPM Fulfillment), explains Kevin Gaffney, group show director. Attendees must then drop their cards into a bin at the WellSky booth (#1610) by 4:40 p.m. on Wednesday, just prior to the drawing there at 4:45. Medtrade introduced the giveaway last year as a way to encourage attendees to stick around for the full conference.

VGM releases playbook on billing
ATLANTA – While at Medtrade, the VGM Group released its latest playbook: “Industry Insights: Billing and Reimbursement Preparation in 2019.” It’s the third such playbook that VGM has made available for download to help providers adjust to an ever-changing business climate. “With the competitive bidding thumb temporarily lifted at the beginning of 2019, we want to help prepare VGM members for these changes,” said Clint Geffert, president of VGM & Associates, a division of VGM. “This playbook will provide in-depth information on how to prepare for a new landscape in January, as well as give options on how to continue to serve patients while remaining profitable.” The playbook includes, among other things, an analysis of CMS’s recent bid-related proposed rule and an outline of new opportunities in bid areas.

The Compliance Team names first PCRH recipient
ATLANTA – The Compliance Team presented Henry Loe, Jr., the owner of Breath of Life, with Exemplary Provider accredited status for its new Patient-Centered Respiratory Home program at Medtrade on Tuesday. The Sherman, Texas-based provider is the first to receive the designation, which is specifically designed to help respiratory care professionals perform to the top of their license. “Leading up to the launch of our Respiratory Home program, there was a growing realization of the need for better communication and coordination regarding respiratory care management,” said Sandra Canally, founder and CEO of The Compliance Team. “This new program sets in place quality standards that guide clinical respiratory providers to better engage with their chronic care patients.” The program’s goals include addressing poor respiratory care management; decreasing emergency department visits; and lowering hospital readmissions. The Compliance Team launched the PCRH program in June.

Bonafide launches tracking system
ATLANTA – Bonafide Management Systems launched and demoed its Live Asset Tracking System at Medtrade. The system allows providers to track and monitor vents, infusion pumps, monitors, wheelchairs, beds and other high-value equipment. It includes a small device that can be affixed to any equipment and software that tracks the physical location of the equipment in real-time. “Utilizing this solution could reduce or eliminate lost inventory and all of the associated costs, improving overall profitability by an estimated 15%,” said CEO Scott McDanel. The system allows providers to work in an intuitive online dashboard to view all their high-value equipment in 2D graphical representation. It is based on Bonafide’s inventory control software, which the company has been building since 1981.

ResMed debuts AirFit F30
ATLANTA – ResMed’s AirFit F30, a minimal-contact, full-face CPAP mask featured in Medtrade’s New Product Pavilion, is now available to patients in the U.S. and Canada. The AirFit F30, which features ResMed’s QuietAir vent, sits below the nasal bridge, preventing top-of-the-nose red marks and irritation and reducing feelings of claustrophobia, according to a press release. It fit 93% of users in a ResMed study, making inventory management for HME providers simpler, the company says. “AirFit F30 is a win-win for sleep apnea patients and HMEs, and the perfect addition to ResMed’s portfolio of CPAP masks,” said Jim Hollingshead, president of ResMed’s sleep business. “It provides an easier, quieter and more stable fit for full face wearers, while HMEs can enjoy faster setups and easier inventory management with a mask designed to fit the first time, every time.”