Morin takes wheel at HOMES

‘We want to be the driving force for change’
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Friday, July 10, 2020

NEW BEDFORD, Mass. – Jason Morin brings more than two decades of working for an HME company to his new role as president and CEO of HOMES—experience that he says gives him a “deep understanding” of the industry’s challenges and how they directly impact providers.

Here’s what Morin, formerly vice president of reimbursement and payer relations for Home Care Specialists, had to say about how he grew up in the HME industry and how he hopes to rethink the role of not only state and regional associations, but also providers themselves.

HME News: So you worked your whole 23-year career in the industry at Home Care Specialists?

Jason Morin: That’s why so many people were shocked that I was leaving. But after 23 years, I had done it all—starting as a delivery driver, moving into sales, becoming an RT, and transitioning into reimbursement and payer relations—and I wanted to move in a different direction. This role at HOMES played into all of the things that I loved about my job at the time.

HME: Which were?

Morin: I gravitated toward the payer relations side and networking on a national level. I was the inaugural chair of the Payer Relations Council at AAHomecare, and I’ve been active in HOMES for more than a decade.

HME: Payer relations would seem to be one of the more frustrating aspects of the industry.

Morin: I’ve always been kind of crazy: When I was in sales, I loved cold calling. I loved the challenge of knocking on closed doors and getting them to open. The thing that is amazing, that I’ve never seen before in all my years working in the industry, has been the amount of collaboration and sharing of resources between state associations and national associations, and between stakeholders and payers like Medicaid. We’re at a turning point now, where the value of HME is really starting to be known. The current public health emergency has really underscored that.

HME: What is the biggest challenge in payer relations?
Morin: The No. 1 challenge has been and continues to be reimbursement and dwindling payments. What we need to do, as an industry, is rethink our approach. It’s not about fighting for pennies and dollars but about rethinking the reimbursement structure altogether. For so many years, the industry has been commoditized by government payers because they don’t know what we do. I think we’ve made positive changes in that realm. And with the PHE, now is the time to strike while the iron is hot. We’re having those dialogues.

HME: As someone who has been involved in associations and now leads one, what do you think is their role in the industry?

Morin: To be the voice driving change. It’s not about updating our members on what Medicare did with the ABN; there’s education widely available on that. We want to be the voice of New England providers. We want to understand the challenges and be the driving force for change. I also want to transition our association from being a high-level, executive association to being inclusive of the next round of HME professionals. They’re the professionals who are going to take us to the next level and drive change.