Thursday, July 30, 2015

Growing Old

“Growing old is so darn unappealing until you consider the alternative.” David Baldacci - Hour Game.

I have used this quote because it reflects what I do believe. In my career, I have always worked with so called "senior" citizens. When you work with them, you will discover they are both agreeable and they can contribute a great deal.

Now that I am a “senior citizen,” I am sure that I understand the role I played in the many things I did! I have always worked with the seniors in my community because the “Thank You” I received was worth far more than worth the effort. Today I try to do the same with everyone I work with! When Thelma and I look back at the many different employees who made our company function, we consider that we were blessed. We always had a superb staff supporting us!

Perhaps we older folks may not work with the speed that some younger folks do, but it is end results that count. Thelma and I were very fortunate to have found two young ladies in the local high school that would come in every afternoon for an hour or two. With their efforts on our behalf, so much was accomplished daily! God Bless the younger generation because they soon will become us!

The young folks today all seem to fill the void in every office with big smiles and make the work day finish quickly. I am sure that you all can make a small investment in this fashion, which will pay off with a great big return.

But, always keep your eye open for some of the senior citizens as well. Never sell us short! Do not consider us as “mom and pop” and they will then accomplish more than you ever expected!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Do It Now

I have learned over the years when you have a good idea or thought, it's important to “act on it.” I have received phone calls from many friends and readers who have shared with me their plans, but they often did not act to accomplish them! This should never happen! You should all have the courage to follow through when you have an idea and then you will be very pleased with the results!

Many years ago, Thelma and I had a plan about developing a cooperative where dealers could share ideas with one another. We built this into a very effective program. It was the birth of the Home Health Care Dealers Co-op! If any of you former members see this memo, please send us a note (! We are planning to attend Medtrade and perhaps we can meet you there?

As a major project of the Co-op, every week we sent a mailing to all the participants with the many ideas and thoughts that came to our attention. Now when we go to meetings, we still see some of our friends from those days. They comment on how enjoyable this program was for them and how they really miss sharing things with one another.

Always share your ideas, because for every one who learns from you, reflect what you have received and shared with them. Each profit from this effort!

We received e-mail this morning from one of our old friends and are “doing” this as an answer “now.” Why? Because we love when we hear from any of you and we make every effort to acknowledge this STAT! We were “asked” to share this with our readers and I say “thank you” and we are reacting ASAP.

Please keep the e-mails coming; they mean so much to both Thelma and I.

If you still need to register for Medtrade, please use the promotional code SHELLY to get your Free Expo Pass!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Information, Please

In order to do anything successfully, a great deal of information is always necessary. It does not matter what, who, or when! It basically means being aware of what you are trying to accomplish and that which is involved as you strive to reach your goal.

Many years ago, when one of my grandchildren was writing “thank you” notes after his birthday, I offered to help him. He said: “No, thank you, Grandpa, it has to be in my words.” I will never forget this response.  With the correct information, you will always successfully complete whatever you try to do! He had the correct approach - so do you!

My grandson knew responsibility. Today, many years later he is very successful. I am so proud of him! Whatever you may be addressing, you must have sufficient information so that your efforts will never be in vain. When you go shopping for food in a supermarket, or are looking to purchase a new vehicle at an automobile dealer, you require the same information.

When Thelma goes to the supermarket, she takes a list of the items that she requires. Like most men, when I go to pick up one or two things, a loaf of bread or a bottle of milk, if they are not written down, somehow I manage to bring home more than just one bag of food! Having the correct information will save you a lot of dollars. The same applies when you shop for anything!

Here is some important information for you:

1.) Have you made reservations to attend Medtrade?

2.) Have you chosen which employee or employees you will bring with you?

Do it now, do not procrastinate! The way things are rapidly developing; I can only say that this year will probably be the biggest and the best Medtrade ever! Will Thelma and I see you there? We hope so!
Please use the promo code SHELLY when registering for Medtrade, and receive a Free Expo Pass!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015


From the day I was discharged from the army (in 1946) until now, I have always been working with other people. I make every effort to stay as busy as possible! Whether my activities were business related or personal, I usually accomplished them via a simple handshake. I never looked for or had a contract. That was why I shook hands. This confirmed what we agreed!

I now can look back with a great deal of pride because of the many wonderful people with whom I have worked. I am truly blessed when I see so many of those fine folks are still active today. They are continuing to provide their skills to maintain our industry.

I admire all the work Tom Ryan accomplishes daily. What is even more satisfying is to know that so many others are working as diligently as they can with him! We are extremely fortunate in that these great numbers of people are still willing to share their skills and knowledge for the benefit of all.

You, as a DME/HME provider, do not need a contract to “get on board” to maintain our industry! When you are a member of AAHomecare and your state DME association, that becomes your “contract”. Every dealer or provider not only has to pay their dues, but they are also asked to write letters and make telephone calls to congressmen and other elected representatives.

You realize when your voice is not heard it is of little value. But when your employees and staff join with you, this makes your voice difficult to be ignored. There is a great deal that must be completed between now and Medtrade in Atlanta. Be sure you stay on top and follow the leaders. When we all do that we will be successful!
Register for Medtrade with the promo code SHELLY to get your Free Expo Pass.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Thought for Today

The Associated Press has a "Thought for Today” column in my daily newspaper. One day they quoted Emily Dickinson, who passed away on 5/15/86: “Behavior is what a man does, not what he thinks, feels, or believes.” We all do this without any hesitation, don’t we?

It is difficult for me not to make an answer STAT when I hear a comment that I do not agree with. However, I have learned; and it took me a long time to wait a few seconds before responding! We all must respect what other people say, and not question what they said without thinking first! When we all will do the same, then usually a good response can be made.

For more than sixty-five years I have been active in "home health care"! After the fighting ceased in 1945, I was in Berlin helping to run the pharmacy at the 279th Station Hospital. What I saw and learned there has been with me all my life. When you are a cog on a wheel and everyone does his or her best, it succeeds! It is “team-work” that makes things work! None of us stands alone!

DME/HME dealers and providers must each participate by becoming dues paying members of our industry's
 associations. They make things happen. I have been repeating this in one form or another all my life! You have to support those associations who work so diligently for you: both your state DME association and AAHomecare.

I would like to see many more dealers become dues paying members. When I see the fantastic things the associations are able to accomplish now and then I think how much more they would be able to do with more members. Why does any DME/HME dealer hesitate to get on board? Your accountants preach ROI, return on investment. Ask your accountants what “getting on board” will do for you! They will tell you how important that is for your company.

Monday, July 13, 2015


One thing is constant: It is always “today”.
How much you can accomplish in one day? That is how this should be approached. In school, I was taught that we should write down what we planned to do and then as new things developed just add them to the list. This always worked for me!

Over the years I have heard many people talk about the beautiful plans they have constructed for the future. When I next run into them and ask, “How did your plan go?” Too often I was told it didn’t! Their plan got lost in transit. How sad that is.

Today is the present day! So if you do not do what you planned STAT, remember there is never a tomorrow!

When I speak to many DME/HME dealers, I often ask if they belong to AAHomecare and their State Association. If I did not get a positive response, invariably the answer was: “Gosh, I just didn’t get around to it yet!” That would not happen if you did it today. Remember, these organizations work for you, and the more companies who join, the more things they can accomplish.

In the last ten years, I have had the privilege of speaking with many successful DME/HME dealers. I can say without any hesitation that each and every one of them accomplished their goals because they understood that things must be done today! When you do the same, you will build a most energetic and successful operation!

Thelma and I are planning to attend Medtrade in the fall. This will be our last visit. After the show, we will spend the rest of the time allotted to us with our grandchildren. I will not be a speaker. I will be a guest! Thelma and I will be there to see all of our friends! We consider every attendee to be friend. When you see us meandering about, PLEASE say, “Hello, Shelly!"
For a Free Expo Pass, register for Medtrade using the promotional code: SHELLY. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

My Final Medtrade

I would like to share with you a piece composed by the very talented Greg Thompson, Medtrade Media Relations, and author of many of the articles found in the Medtrade Monday emails. He eloquently tells some of my story, much of which my readers may already know. Nevertheless, I hope you enjoy it!
Shelly Prial Will Make 2015 His Final Medtrade

ATLANTA, July 7, 2015 Sheldon (Shelly) Prial has been to all but one Medtrade, and the 88-year-old HME legend has decided to make this year’s show his last. As Medtrade Ambassador for many years, Prial and his wife Thelma have come to represent the sense of community that Medtrade is all about.

“Shelly knows the HME and pharmacy worlds better than anyone,” says Kevin Gaffney, group show director, Medtrade. “Shelly knows everyone and everyone knows him. He is the best Medtrade ambassador we will ever have, and he can’t be replaced. All that said, he’s not done yet, and we look forward to seeing him and Thelma at Medtrade this year.” 

For those who don’t know a lot about Shelly, he is a WW II veteran who was initially turned down by the the Army because he could only see out of one eye. He eventually volunteered again and took the test with his right eye twice.

Almost 70 years later, Shelly still talks of the eye test deception with a measure of guilt. The fib eventually led him overseas where he was assigned to be a demolition man in the 252 Combat Engineers. “This required me to work with sticks of dynamite,” he remembers, “and I am by nature rather clumsy.”

Just 20 years old when he got out of the Army, he went back to school, eventually earning his Bachelor of Science degree and becoming a Registered Pharmacist in 1950. A year before graduation (1949), Shelly reluctantly agreed to go to a party that would change his life.

“My best friend invited me and I said, ‘No, I’m working tomorrow and Sunday,’” muses Shelly. “One of the reasons he invited me was because I had a green 1940 Buick Convertible with red leather seats. I finally said yes, so we went in my vehicle to this party. That’s when I met Thelma, who’s sorority was there.

“I said, ‘Let’s stay a little later and help clean up,” continues Shelly. “When we got back, I said, ‘Stanley, I’m marrying Thelma.’ He told me I was out of my mind, and I said, ‘No, I’m serious.’ We got married eight months later.”

On July 2, 2015, Shelly and Thelma (both New York natives) will celebrate 65 years of marriage. “Nobody in this whole world has ever had a better spouse than I,” says Shelly. “She and I have been one person for all of these years. With our children, we always worked together. When I built my pharmacies, she was there all the time. It was never me alone, or her alone.”

Say hello to Shelly at this year’s Medtrade, scheduled for Oct 26-29, 2015. Click the link below to register for Medtrade 2015.
Greg Thompson
Medtrade Media Relations
(970) 206-0071 (office); (970) 227-1002 (cell);

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Why Medtrade?

When our children were younger and we asked them a question, often the answer was, “Why?" As our offspring grew, we provided guidance when they asked for explanations. We didn’t know what they were thinking or if our request was being evaded.
The same applies to attendance at Medtrade. I am sure that we all appreciate the importance of this meeting. This is where the future for your company can be extended. It is too easy to sit back and wait to see what the future holds. It is so much better to take steps forward so that your company will benefit from the many vacillations that happen daily.
DME/HME is a very active business! Alterations can happen so quickly and when you are not aware, they will pass right by you! When Thelma and I were running our company, we had a rule that all responses had to be answered STAT. By responding as quickly as possible, we developed a great deal of loyalty. We also supplemented these with a memo by repeating what was done. Today you can do this with your computer. But although times have changed, a timely response is still critical.
You cannot buy loyalty - You have to earn it! The Medtrade Exhibition has proven to be the one most important meeting available for every DME/HME dealer. Where else can one meet with so many peers and exhibitors, or attend classes and lectures, all in one place? This is where loyalty pays off! I cannot tell you how many follow-ups Thelma and I experienced after each Medtrade, for it was many!
What we always did was take one or two members of our staff with us. Your company should do the same. Whatever it may cost to bring a staff member, it always pays off. This develops loyalty from your customers and the recognition by the vendors is huge. 
So why Medtrade? I think you know the answer!
Early Registration for Medtrade is still in effect. Register Now to take advantage of substantial savings.