The latest Mobility Management podcast focuses on funding from two perspectives: the need for Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) reimbursement to keep up with current events, and the need for service and repair reform.
National Seating & Mobility’s CEO Bill Mixon and Chief Revenue Cycle Officer Charles Sargeant explained how the pandemic, with its supply chain issues and increased shipping costs, put the squeeze on CRT suppliers and ultimately on the people who depend on their complex seating and wheelchairs.
But they also pointed out that recent events further strained already flawed equipment procurement and reimbursement processes.
“CRT equipment is highly customized,” Mixon said. “While some components of our manual wheelchairs or our power wheelchairs can be used as common components on every chair, other components are highly specialized and subject to this supply chain. Also, our industry, like other industries, have faced workforce pressures, shutdowns, rising energy costs, and all of these have slowed production cycle times at some level around the globe.”
He also explained that recent events have highlighted and worsened already lengthy time cycles for CRT service and repair.
“It’s a loss leader for the CRT industry because insurance companies and their reimbursements don’t in most instances cover the actual labor, parts and associated logistics related to the service,” Mixon said. “You then add costs to these services, with inflation and other supply chain challenges, and you’re exacerbating an already strained system.”
“The process just doesn’t need to be nearly as complicated and inconsistent as it is,” Sargeant said. “Payors are hesitant to make changes that would have an impactful result in service improvement.
“Any service that is provided needs to be properly funded to be excellent. There’s no way to work through a situation where you’re not paid enough for the services to provide the level of service that’s required.”