Invacare Supply Group & Agape Medical Management Join Forces vs. NCB

Invacare Supply Group (ISG) and Agape Medical Management have entered into what they're calling a "mutual marketing agreement" in an effort to help DME suppliers through round 2 of Medicare's national competitive bidding (NCB) program.

The joint effort aims to provide suppliers with a "complete Bid-to-Billing solution," according to an announcement made by ISG (invacare.com).

"Combining our efforts with ISG offers providers the best solution possible to successfully manage and complete the rigorous and time-consuming bidding process while maintaining the necessary service levels their patients have come to expect," Cheryl Ward, CEO of Agape, said in a news release.

The announcement of the agreement said Agape (agapemedi.com) "has been able to establish strong working relationships with various state and federal government agencies, including the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Competitive Bidding Implementation Contractor (CBIC), to ensure all necessary documentation is completed and submitted as required. ISG provides a comprehensive and profitable fulfillment solution with aggressive 'best of value' pricing for quality name-brand product combined with a low fixed freight cost that includes ISG's Express delivery in less than 48 hours."

ISG is an Invacare Corp. subsidiary. At Medtrade in Atlanta last week, Invacare Corp. chairman Mal Mixon and senior VP of government relations Cara Bachenheimer unveiled a competitive bidding plan called "Act Now! Ask Me How" - aimed at preparing DME suppliers for competitive bidding's next round.

During an Act Now! Presentation in Atlanta, Mixon and Bachenheimer agreed that despite ongoing efforts to repeal competitive bidding entirely, "fixing" - i.e., trying to amend -- the program may be the more realistic option at this point given the general atmosphere in Congress and the lack of Senate support for a repeal.

H.R. 1041, the House bill to repeal competitive bidding, has 161 co-sponsors, but there is no companion Senate bill at this time.

About the Author

Laurie Watanabe is the editor of Mobility Management. She can be reached at lwatanabe@1105media.com.

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