To mark its 25th anniversary, HomeCare magazine honored six individuals who have provided distinguished service to the home medical equipment industry.
by Paula Patch
March 1, 2003

To mark its 25th anniversary, HomeCare
magazine honored six individuals who have provided distinguished
service to the home medical equipment industry.

Each recipient was chosen for his or her demonstrated commitment
to the HME provider community and service to the entire HME
industry.

Scott Higley, vice president of sales for Quantum Rehab, a
division of Exeter, Pa.-based Pride Mobility, is one of the six
Caring Award recipients. A 20-year veteran of the HME industry,
Higley knows the industry from top to bottom, and from the
perspective of both provider and manufacturer.

Recently, HomeCare talked to Higley about his career in
home health care.

HC: What has made you stay in the HME industry?

Scott: I found that I had a passion for the industry. I
thought the industry had — and has — incredible
potential. By staying in the industry and by knowing it from the
level of delivery, to working as operational manager for Foster
Medical, to sales, I gained the compassion to understand different
roles and the application of those roles. As a result, I have a
broader view of the whole provider end of it.

[Six and a half years ago], I was approached by Dan Meuser with
Pride Mobility Products, and the rest is history — a
wonderful history of working with great people and having the
opportunity to do what I've felt like a company should do in this
industry, which is to always keep an open mind and to include the
provider in all the things we're doing. That's the focus I have and
a focus that Pride has.

HC: What is the greatest accomplishment of your HME
career?

Scott: My greatest accomplishment is having a positive
effect on people without realizing it. [Some days], I'm asked to do
all sorts of things, and think I have no time to do them. All of a
sudden, I see a child use a walker and walk for the first time in
her life. After that, I think, wow, I can do 10 more of my regular
tasks.

HC: What are you most proud of?

Scott: I'm most proud of having my father recognize my
accomplishments in the industry — knowing that he was proud
of me.

HC: What advice would you give HME providers about their role
in the industry?

Scott: We all come into this industry with — or
acquire shortly after entering the industry — a particular
attitude, which we can apply to our business practices, our
professional attitudes and our political stances. That attitude is
this: We are helping people to not just exist, but to excel in
their lives, with the products or services that we provide.

I'm adamant about not using the term “end user.” The
people who use HME are customers, and if we don't forget that,
we'll always come out ahead. We have to treat people with the same
dignity and respect as they would get going into a Macys department
store, and not as people in the medical system who just need some
products.

HC: Any other advice?

Scott: Remember where you came from. Start at the ground
level and make it more than a job; make it a career.

One of the things that makes this industry great is that if
someone is willing to give extra effort — to take advantage
of opportunities and to maximize those opportunities — he or
she can be very successful.

Caring Award recipient Scott Higley once worked for a
provider so small that, in the mornings, he would call on
facilities and rehab hospitals, and, in the afternoon, he would
deliver the products.