August 16, 2011

Dear NHIA Member:

As we celebrate the 20th anniversary of our Association, we are proud that NHIA remains impactful and vibrant, despite the economic challenges of recent years. As many of you will remember, four years ago we avoided the possibility of the Association's insolvency by taking significant steps to save the organization via bringing in a new management team and transforming NHIA from a struggling, primarily individual member society to a successful trade association made up of company members. With your support, the initial reorganization in 2008 was successful in producing a revitalized NHIA.

Now, four years later, health care reform and changing regulatory requirements are sending shock waves throughout the health care landscape as never before. Pressure to reduce health care spending is sure to threaten providers' present revenue streams. Simultaneously, continuing industry consolidation has led to lost revenue for the Association, making it more and more challenging to respond to the changing industry landscape—and we expect this trend to continue in the foreseeable future. Today, NHIA and our field are once again at a crucial crossroad. Our course of action is clear—we must support the most promising activities that can, wherever possible, protect current revenue streams and create new business and care opportunities for our industry and the patients we serve.

In alignment with the organization's mission and strategic vision, and after much careful consideration by your Board of Directors, we have made the necessary decision to increase NHIA membership dues in 2012. We would like to share with you the rationale behind the dues change—our first in four years:

  • NHIA's mission is to: represent and advance the interests of organizations that provide infusion and specialized pharmacy products and services to the entire spectrum of home-based patients­ with legislative, regulatory and advocacy activities clearly at the center of that shared mission.

  • As the legislative and regulatory landscape changes, the need for increased advocacy by the Association dramatically increases as well (and so, too, do the related costs).

  • This will require an even more aggressive campaign in Washington to protect the current business interests of our membership—while, at the same time, we must continue to proactively work on gaining a meaningful Medicare home infusion benefit.

  • Following a comprehensive assessment of the long-term needs of our field, it became clear that the current dues schedule could no longer sustain the growing needs of the membership and the industry as a whole.

  • During the past three years, approximately 30 to 35 NHIA member organizations have stepped forward annually with additional contributions through our Legislative Defense Fund (LDF) to try to augment the support needed for successful advocacy efforts, and we commend these companies for their important efforts—but moving forward, as we face even greater challenges, the burden and responsibility of protecting the field must be proportionally shared among all of us.

With equal representation from small, medium and large alternate-site infusion providers, the Board was unanimous in its decision to implement an equitable dues increase that would further enhance and strengthen services to members, while giving the Association the financial resources needed to amplify its voice on legislative and regulatory issues. Every effort was made to balance the tiers of the dues schedule in a judicious and fair manner, given the diverse make-up of the membership.

The dues increase will go into effect in 2012, upon your regular billing anniversary date. Additional information on the dues increase will be provided in the coming months. In the meantime, the new dues tier structure, a list of key NHIA accomplishments since 2008, and a set of frequently asked questions and answers are all available on the NHIA website at: www.nhia.org/Membership/provider.cfm

We are on a steady path to achieving the goals we have set forth in our strategic plan and to creating a promising future for our respective businesses—and the industry overall. Our new membership dues structure is an investment we must all make together to secure our continued success. We look to your ongoing support, as we work collectively to maximize the opportunities that lie ahead. Thank you.

Sincerely,

The NHIA Board of Directors

Mary Ann Cope, R.Ph.
NHIA Board Chair
HomeChoice Partners, Inc
Paul Mastrapa
NHIA Board Vice Chair
Walgreens Infusion and Respiratory Services
Drew Walk
NHIA Board Treasurer
Critical Care Systems
Dave Grady
NHIA Board Secretary
Big Sky IV Care
Rick Smith
BioScrip
Chris Beaudoin
Providence Infusion and Pharmacy Services
Jim Cook, P.D.
Lincare Infusion

Joe Cosgrove
Pentec Health Inc.

Jim Glynn
Amerita, Inc.
Dan Greenleaf
Coram/Apria Healthcare
Tom Brown, R.Ph.
Jefferson Home Infusion
Sandy Tzaferos, Pharm.D.
MediLink Home Care, Inc.
Lynn Giglione, R.N., B.S.N.
NHIA Past Board Chair
Chartwell Pennsylvania