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News & notes - July 21, 2011
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New Officers & Directors Selected for GAMES Board of Directors

GAMES held elections on July 17, 2011 at the Annual Convention in Savannah.  The following GAMES members were selected, and have agreed, to serve as Board members for the year 2011 - 2012:

2011 - 2012 GAMES Board of Directors

Executive Committee / Officers
 
Phillip Stoudenmire – President
Georgia Home Medical Equipment           
 
David Petsch - Treasurer
Petsch Respiratory Services
 
Todd Tyson – Past President
Hi-Tech Healthcare
 
Bill Cheek, RRT, RCP - Secretary
Carmichaels Home Medical Equipment
 
Directors
 
Hobbs Home Medical     
 
Cornerstone Medical
 
Jones Medical Equipment
 
National Seating & Mobility
 
Barnes Healthcare Services
 
 
Vendor Liaisons
 
VGM
Philips Respironics  
 


A Message from HP regarding the Georgia MMIS web portal

Received July 19, 2011

Providers, 
 
The browsers tested by HP Enterprise Solutions for the new GHP Web Portal, which includes Internet Explorer (IE) versions 6 and 7 and Firefox 3.x, were confirmed to be compatible. However, as new versions of your current browser are released, please refer to the steps below for common browser issues related to the new GHP Web Portal. 
 
Experiencing slowness with the Web Portal:
 
1.                   Please close all browser windows.
2.                   Open a new browser window and connect to www.mmis.georgia.gov. Select Login and enter your username and password. Attempt to navigate on the secure Web Portal again.  
 
If slowness continues, check response times on other Web sites, such as Yahoo! or Google. If slowness continues on non-HP Enterprise Services supported sites, please contact your internet service provider for further assistance. 
 
Experiencing other technical issues with the Web Portal (such as pages disappearing, panels closing when user clicks add, etc.) while using IE7or greater:
 
1.                   Follow the compatibility steps on the Microsoft Web site.
2.                   Once step 1 has been completed, please close all browser windows.
3.                   Open a new browser window and connect to www.mmis.georgia.gov. Select Login and enter your username and password. Attempt to navigate on the secure Web Portal again. If this has not corrected your issue, continue to step 4.
4.                   Follow the steps in the Reset Internet Explorer for me or Let me reset Internet Explorer myself sections on Microsoft’s How to reset Internet Explorer Settings Web page.
 
Please Note: Completing the steps outlined in step 4 will restore Internet Explorer back to its original settings and disable any toolbars or add-ons previously installed. 
 
5.                   Once step 4 has been completed, please close all browser windows.
6.                   Open a new browser and connect to www.mmis.georgia.gov. Select Login and enter your username and password. Attempt to navigate on the secure Web Portal again.
7.                   After the browser has been reset to its factory settings, please update your publication settings to successfully download/view publications from the Web Portal in the future. Instructions for this can be found on any publication page, such as Provider Information > Provider Notices, and select the Click here for help with download issues hyperlink found in the File Download Issues section. 

Humana-Apria Deal Could Mean 'Serious Trouble' for Some Providers

From Homecare Monday July 18, 2011
LOUISVILLE, Ky.—Nationwide insurance carrier Humana has selected Apria Healthcare as its provider of choice for home medical equipment, according to the giant insurer’s website.

Some small independents, which are already staggering under the threat of competitive bidding, amped-up audits and Medicaid woes, said the agreement is another big blow.

“I view this as being almost as threatening as competitive bidding to the independent providers in America,” said Jason Rogers of Care Medical in Athens, Ga. “If this goes well, who is to say this won’t be Blue Cross, Medicaid and who knows who else? It won’t matter how good we are.”   READ MORE ... 


Invacare offers terrific July Specials!

CLICK HERE to learn more.


Inventory Solutions Unveils New Website
 

Inventory Solutions, Inc. offers a proven and cost effective way to provide reliable and affordable refurbished equipment to Homecare, Hospital and Rental companies in the medical industry.
 

Specializing in the sale of the highest quality respiratory products, Inventory Solutions, Inc. utilizes only the most experienced, certified bioengineering centers to refurbish all equipment to manufacturers specifications before delivery to our customers.
 

Their knowledgeable staff will provide product information and understands industry trends to assure that they will be there to meet and exceed their customer's expectations.
 

Local rep: Anne Holcombe 770-331-7567 or log onto www.invsol.com!
 


Professor Peter Cramton releases Medicare Auction Reform Video

While GAMES, most national associations, and most state associations support repeal of Medicare Competitive Bidding, prominent economist and auction expert, Peter Cramton, has released a video explaining the flaws of the current bid process and offering suggestions for reform of the process.

CLICK HERE to view the 12 minute video. 


Congress Urges Accreditation Standards for NPWT

From AAHomecare July 21, 2011
Late yesterday, Representatives Charles Gonzalez (D-Texas), Tom Price (R-Ga.) and Michael Burgess (R-Texas) circulated a Dear Colleague letter encouraging the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to establish accreditation standards for all negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) HME providers under Medicare Part B. The letter recommends that all providers be accredited at the time of submitting bids in Round Two of CMS’ bidding program in the event that NPWT is included. This would be consistent with accreditation requirements in other categories that are already included in the competitive bidding program. NPWT accreditation standards will ensure that submitted bids are valid and reflect the necessary services defined in the accreditation standards.
READ MORE ... 
 


Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia

Thank you to everyone that responded to this (July 14) request! If you have not sent your email, please do so today, letting them know your accrediting organization.  Do this whether you are accredited by one of the three they have selected or not.

From the July 14 News & Notes:
Many GAMES members have received notice of the recent accreditation requirements from BCBS. Several provider members and associate members will be excluded from providing services based on the requirement that providers of DME should be accredited by either The Joint Commission, ACHC, or CHAP. 

GAMES leadership met with BCBS and expressed our concerns over the burden this would place on many providers as well as the potential for patient access issues.   As a result, BCBS has requested that all providers immediately send an email letting BCBS know the name of your accrediting organization.  

Please email GAMES  to keep us informed and with any thoughts or suggestions on this topic. We have a follow-up call scheduled with BCBS after Labor Day.


Don't miss these DMEPOS Updates from the Medicare Learning Network®

 “Basics of DMEPOS Accreditation” Fact Sheet Now Available in Hardcopy

The “Basics of Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS) Accreditation” fact sheet is now available in hard copy format from the Medicare Learning Network; this fact sheet is designed to provide education on the DMEPOS accreditation requirements, the types of providers who are exempt, and the process for becoming accredited. .

“DMEPOS Quality Standards” Fact Sheet Now Available in Hardcopy

The “Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS) Quality Standards” fact sheet is now available in a hard copy format from the Medicare Learning Network; this fact sheet is designed to provide education on DMEPOS quality standards for Medicare-deemed Accreditation Organizations (AOs) for DMEPOS suppliers.

“DMEPOS New Information for Pharmacies” Booklet Now Available in Hardcopy

The “Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS) New Information for Pharmacies” booklet is now available in hard copy format from the Medicare Learning Network; this booklet is designed to provide education for new pharmacies on how to obtain a DMEPOS accreditation exemption. In order to supply DMEPOS, pharmacies must be accredited by CMS-approved independent national Accreditation Organization (AO) or must obtain an accreditation exemption.

To place your order for any of these publications, visit the MLN Product Ordering Page at http://CMS.meridianksi.com/kc/pfs/pfs_lnkfrm_fl.asp?lgnfrm=reqprod&function=pfs.


Looking for a previous issue of News & Notes?

CLICK HERE for every past issue!


Georgia Association of Medical Equipment Suppliers (GAMES)
3605 Sandy Plains Rd., Suite 240-470
Marietta, GA 30066
ph: 770-578-3999; fax: 770-578-3399
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3605 Sandy Plains Rd ▲ Suite 240-470 ▲ Marietta ▲ GA ▲30066 ▲ 770-578-3999 ▲ fax: 770-578-3399 ▲ teresa@gameshme.org