Medtrade Atlanta 2014: At first I was afraid, I was petrified…

Date Published: November 04 2014

Gloria Gaynor sang it to us with such passion in the 70’s. Had you asked me if I will survive the widespread turmoil in the DME Industry a year ago, I would have been cautiously optimistic.

The 2013 Medtrade Orlando was dismal at best. The general consensus last year was DME providers were being read their “last rites”. The 2014 Medtrade Atlanta was my 25th anniversary attending, and what should have been an exciting time honestly left me feeling much trepidation.

The skeptics have looked at the facts as they see them and have predicted the demise of this amazing industry. DME company closures and bankruptcies, increased and unrelenting audits, competitive bid and acquisitions to merge into one big fast food DME Chain were cited as “proof” that this industry is on its last leg. 

I rallied the troops and marched them into Medtrade Atlanta 2014 with a hope and a prayer. I was rewarded in return; The DME Industry is not dead yet! DME providers who were in attendance this year are changing and evolving and thus surviving. 

Our industry has changed, and so have we. The industry as a whole is tightening its purse strings and forcing us to rethink our business strategies. Fortunately for us technology is taking over the world and in the case of social media it is free! Information about our industry was once limited to “insider” information only, obtained from the “who’s who” industry experts and who you know. Now this same information is instantly available to all of us, enabling us be proactive instead of reactive. DME providers can now be connected via the Internet, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook. What’s next? It’s hard to keep up with social media but it’s becoming increasingly important to stay involved. Inspired by leaders like Emerge Sales Founder Mike Sperduti, #Knowledge = #Power, we are #Changingthegame!

As an exhibiter in Atlanta this year, I had the opportunity to speak with a great number of people and the vibe was very positive. Attendees had done their research and were ready to embrace new ideas and solutions to improve their operational protocols. There is an acceptance that business as usual just doesn’t work anymore. The mindset of “my doctors won’t do this or that” is a distant memory. It has been replaced with a “can do” and cooperative attitude. More than ever, DME providers are partnering with practitioners to navigate through the constantly changing insurance coverage criteria arena. I feel so privileged to evolve with forward-thinking providers.

Each month more than a quarter-million Americans turn 65. These people will need our services.  With forward thinking people and strategic planning the DME industry will continue to be alive and kicking!

We must all embrace the future or get left behind. As long as I learn how to live I know I will survive…

~ Jamie Loper, ATP, Co-Founder


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