Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thank You, Mr. Wallace

Norris Wallace III is the president and CEO of one of the finest DME/HME companies (American Medical Systems). They are located in Macon, GA, one of our favorite cities. For many years, when Thelma and I drove to the Medtrade shows, we usually stayed in Macon the evening before we had to set up in Atlanta.

Mr. Wallace is correct in saying: “…accreditation is no longer voluntary, but required by CMS to build the system or maintain a Medicare Provider number.” Mr. Wallace pointed out that his company is in their 32nd year; he follows their directions carefully but feels it adds additional cost (around 25%) to his operations. I agree with him 100%.

The weakness in the system is that it does not have teeth. I am a Registered Pharmacist, and my pharmacies had to be very carefully inspected before I could open the door. I was then subject to unannounced visits to determine that I am maintaining everything required by law. To earn a license, the principal should be a professional (e.g., RN, PT or Registered Pharmacist).

The first step to receiving licensure is accreditation. Without strong teeth, any rules or regulations are valueless. Over the years, I have visited too many companies that should not have been in the system! It is active companies, like American Medical Systems, that beneficiaries require. They are the key to continued success in Medicare and homecare.

When all standards have been met, the license should be awarded. It can then be suspended or revoked if the company does not abide by all regulations.

Mr. Wallace sent me one of the most interesting letters I have received since writing these blogs. I have to agree with many of his comments, such as: “We don’t need more government regulation,” or, “Capped rental is blatantly unfair and has been a crippling blow to the industry.” Yes, these things are true, but we have to make licensure the method of monitoring and maintaining our industry.

American Medical Systems has deserved the recognition as a premier operation, as a well established and community oriented DME dealer! This is what I see in every excellent company.

I look forward to meeting Mr. Wallace, in person, at Medtrade this fall in Atlanta. Perhaps time will allow us to join for a libation and get to know each other at the show. Thank you very much, Mr. Norris Wallace.

Readers, please do not hesitate to send me a message ( I promise to answer ASAP.

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