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By Rob Duryea, President

Image from Medtrade Fall 2017

It’s one week post-Medtrade and my mind is still reeling from the amazing provider interactions, engaged exhibit time, presentation pressures and exposure to new technologies.


It couldn’t be farther from the first Medtrade I attended – Medtrade Spring 2016. During Medtrade Spring 2016, I felt pain and frustration from the attendees. Many hadn’t fully accepted the changes happening in the industry and weren’t sure where to turn for help. This fall, the providers were moving forward with different avenues to provide value to their customer base and exhibitors were fully engaged in how to help dealers sell, increase product awareness, and educate patients.

Tech was at the top of minds and the promising sign of new companies entering the industry was observed often.

But that’s just my take. How was your experience? What were your takeaways? Did you notice the same?

Image of Medtrade Fall 2017 Attendees with HME United T-Shirts

The crowd:

These people were out for deeper conversations about solutions to address their business challenges.  There also seemed to be younger generations there, perhaps coming into the family business or starting off their career in HME.

The Exhibitors:

Exhibitors such as EZ-ACCESS and Golden Technologies were very busy. Like many of the exhibitors at Medtrade, they were engaged not only with educating providers on their products, but also how to sell the product, increase product awareness in their market, and other resources to help the providers offer more value. 

Image of Medtrade 2017 Vendor Booths

The Overall Feel:

Throughout the show, I spoke with many providers who appeared to have accepted the new normal of our industry and are moving forward with a new business model.  They are looking for different avenues to provide value to clients in different ways, and to better engage and grow their customer base more aggressively.

The Newbies:

Another very promising observation from Medtrade was the fact that there are still new companies, such as NDC, coming into the industry and attending Medtrade for the first time. We still have tons of baby boomers who will want access to age comfortably at home, and these new providers see the potential in entering the business. 

Image of Medtrade Fall 2017 Attendee Conversation

The Technology:

And of course a topic we are extremely passionate about – technology. At Medtrade Fall 2017, new technology was everywhere from Jeremy Kauten’s well attended presentation on cyber security to the best new product at Medtrade, the Owlet. The attendees were excited about new offerings in technology and how these products will dramatically change how their patients age in place more safely and comfortably.  

Comparing when I entered this industry to today, a tide has turn, and it was obvious at Medtrade. The outlook on the future has changed and the providers have changed their approach to the business. We have come so far in such a short amount of time, and I can’t wait to see where we are when VGM Heartland rolls around in June 2018!

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