The Department of Vermont Health Access (DVHA) and Keene Medical Products announced today that the medical equipment provider will remain a full member of the Vermont Medicaid provider network. Keene will continue to fulfill all categories of service to Vermonters, erasing a late April decision by the company to withdraw from the market effective June 1st.
Keene is an important source of medical equipment for the state’s health care providers and Medicaid members. Today’s announcement means that Vermont health care providers and members who use Keene products – including hospital beds, walkers, commodes, ostomy and enteral nutrition – can continue to count on those products and do not have to switch to a new equipment provider.
“On behalf of our more than 160,000 members, and especially the 4,000 that use Keene products, I thank Keene for their continued collaboration,” said DVHA Commissioner Cory Gustafson. “We are grateful that our members can focus on getting the care they need and avoid changes and disruptions.”
“We are committed to our Vermont customers, including those who receive coverage through Medicaid and Dr. Dynasaur,” said Keene CEO Kurt Filiault. “Our dialogue with DVHA over the last few weeks has been positive and given us confidence that our business model can continue to succeed.”
At issue was a recent change in Medicaid reimbursement rates made to align with changes in federal law. DVHA consulted with the Home Medical Equipment and Services Association of New England (HOMES) and its members prior to the change and has been in frequent communication with the association and its network to address implementation concerns. DVHA continues to make adjustments to ensure the new fee schedule balances the State’s commitment to its Medicaid members and Vermont taxpayers. DME companies can use the State’s Global Commitment Register (http://dvha.vermont.gov/global-commitment-to-health/global-commitment-register) to track additional changes.
DVHA and Keene are also collaborating on an outreach plan, notifying members by phone and mail that Keene’s services will continue, that they can disregard the company’s previous letter, and that they will not be required to switch to a different DME provider in the Vermont Medicaid network.
Today’s announcement was welcomed by Vermont’s hospitals and medical providers. “We are pleased that DVHA and Keene reached this agreement,” North Country Hospital Interim CEO Tom Frank said. “High quality rural health care relies on access to durable medical equipment, and a robust provider network is the key to providing that access. Keene is an important member of that network, so we’re relieved that this collaboration will continue.”
About DVHA and Keene
The Department of Vermont Health Access is Vermont’s Medicaid agency and is charged with improving the health and well-being of Vermonters by providing access to quality healthcare, cost effectively.
Keene Medical Products is a family-owned company with over 150 staff who focus on northern New England, providing outstanding customer service and the highest quality products at competitive prices.