HQAA Blog

Mistakes from the Past

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Wed, Jan 16, 2019 @ 09:24 AM

New Year’s Day --with its resolutions, new beginnings, and fresh start attitude-- is a perfect time of year to reflect on continuous improvement and making ourselves better as not only individuals, but as companies set up to serve the public and our customers.  It is also a good time to review ways to improve our bottom line, our operational efficiencies, our general attitude, and our business practices.  This sometimes requires revisiting mistakes from our past, things we did wrong, and looking at how we’ve improved them.  Deficiencies from our past surveys are certainly a worthwhile thing to look at it in an effort to improve.

Read More

Topics: Renewing Accreditation, Quality Standards, HQAA Accreditation, HME Accreditation Requirements, Process Improvement, Avoiding Deficiencies

DME Policy Manuals

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Thu, Nov 08, 2018 @ 10:28 AM

Many in the home medical equipment industry equate policy manuals to their accreditation inspections. And of course, these bulky tomes are certainly a large part of the accreditation and survey experience for every DME. Policy manuals serve as the road map for how work gets done within an organization, a set of rules for the organization, and the document that defines the structure, function, and philosophy of the organization. Let’s look at what a policy manual should contain and how it impacts not only accreditation, but also the overall day-to-day operation of an organization.

Read More

Topics: Employee Training, HIPAA, Security, Personnel Files, Quality Improvement, Billing, Renewing Accreditation, Quality Standards, HQAA Accreditation, HME Accreditation Requirements, Patient File Requirements, Compliance, Patient Privacy, Clinical Practice Guidelines, Materials Management, Avoiding Deficiencies, CMS, Complaint Process, Quality Care, Showroom, Retail, Delivery, Clinical Respiratory Services, Oxygen, Warehouse, Safety Officer, Competence, Customer Service, Disaster Preparedness, Emergencies, Business Practices, Marketing

Ongoing Staff Education in Your HME Organization

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Tue, Jun 05, 2018 @ 03:12 PM

Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today” ……………Malcolm X

Read More

Topics: Employee Training, HME Accreditation Requirements

Tracking Your Equipment

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Thu, Nov 16, 2017 @ 03:34 PM

All accrediting bodies, HQAA included, have standards that require an effective equipment tracking system in place at every organization surveyed.  Tracking systems are essentially a tool to help you keep track of where all your equipment and supplies are at any given time. The purpose of these tracking systems is for not only good overall inventory control and management, but also to facilitate a recall in the event a manufacturer or the FDA institutes a recall. 

Read More

Topics: HME Accreditation Requirements

Coordination of Care

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Fri, Aug 18, 2017 @ 01:39 PM

Towards the end of the Provision of Services (PS) standards, almost to the end of the section, is the very simple accreditation standard PS 9: The Coordination of Care.  The standard, in very simple, straightforward language, reads:

The organization documents the coordination of care between all those involved in the delivery of services or equipment/devices to the client. The organization documents communication with the client and between providers in a standardized manner within the client medical record.

Read More

Topics: HME Accreditation Requirements, Patient File Requirements, Quality Care

Delivery Vehicles & Accreditation: Everything You Need to Know

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Thu, Jun 15, 2017 @ 09:59 AM

Fed Ex, UPS, and the US Postal Service have consistent, easily identifiable, and even iconic delivery vehicles.  Pizza delivery vehicles often sport magnetic signs and/or rooftop billboards identifying the vehicle as part of their organization.  And who hasn’t seen an Edible Arrangements truck cruising down the highway?  This “branding” serves several useful purposes including marketing an organization.  Delivery vehicles have been part of home medical equipment services since the inception of the industry.  Be it a large truck from an industrial gas company, a cargo van, open pickup truck, or even a small, gas efficient compact car, delivery vehicles are an integral part of any DME organization. 

Read More

Topics: HQAA Accreditation, HME Accreditation Requirements, Compliance, Delivery

O2 Orders 101

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Thu, May 04, 2017 @ 10:14 AM

It might surprise some readers to learn that there are enough rules and regulations, quirks and nuances, and potential problems to devote an entire blog article to a topic limited to “oxygen orders”.  The fact is that oxygen orders are a complex enough issue to devote an article to, and more importantly, for your company to devote resources including training time --toward the goal of compliance.

Read More

Topics: Employee Training, HME Accreditation Requirements, Compliance, Clinical Practice Guidelines, Delivery, Oxygen

What to Expect During an Accreditation Survey

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Mon, Apr 10, 2017 @ 02:04 PM

Companies going through an accreditation process usually experience at least some degree of anxiety.  The importance of achieving and maintaining accreditation is often “life and death” to an organization—lose it and you may not be able to continue billing or receive referrals from a payer or a referral source.  If it’s the first time you’re going through the process, you can also add the fear of the unknown to that equation.  Add these factors together and you have a combination that can cause a lot of stress!

Read More

Topics: Renewing Accreditation, Quality Standards, HQAA Accreditation, HME Accreditation Requirements, Compliance, Avoiding Deficiencies

Top Ten Deficiencies & How to Prevent Them

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Wed, Mar 08, 2017 @ 11:33 AM

The nature of accreditation is that a company embraces a continuous quality improvement methodology and operates its business in compliance with laws, regulations, and industry best practices to the best of its ability. Accreditation is a journey not just a destination – a journey full of learning opportunities, education, and revision and tweaking of your company’s processes and procedures.

That process doesn’t lend itself well to quick “punch lists” and it is not advisable to look for shortcuts along the journey. However,

Read More

Topics: Quality Standards, HQAA Accreditation, HME Accreditation Requirements, Compliance, Avoiding Deficiencies

Helping Your Customers Understand Their Financial Responsibility

Posted by Steve DeGenaro on Thu, Jan 05, 2017 @ 11:21 AM

HME organizations struggle with the concept and implementation of informing their customers of their financial responsibilities.  This area of patient rights is often misunderstood and sometimes poorly implemented by organizations.  To establish an effective procedure and mindset for your staff and to serve your customers appropriately, it is important to understand the rationale for this right and requirement.

Read More

Topics: Billing, HME Accreditation Requirements, Compliance