Unveiling the Healing Power: Revolutionize Your HME Business with Surgical Dressings

Published in Complex Rehab on July 05, 2023

Unveiling the Healing Power

As the demand for wound care products and services continues to rise, home medical equipment (HME) businesses are presented with a valuable opportunity to expand their offerings. VGM Wound Care has developed a turnkey program specifically designed to assist HME businesses considering adding surgical dressings to their current offerings. This program offers a range of benefits and support, making it easier for you to expand your product offerings and enhance your revenue streams.  

Why Surgical Dressings? 

Because of the rise of disease in America including but not limited to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, venous insufficiency, and obesity, wounds are on the rise. Simply put, wound care is not going away. 

Some commonly used surgical dressings include: 

  • Transparent film dressings, which are thin, transparent, and allow for easy monitoring of the wound without the need for frequent dressing changes. You can also use the transparent dressing as a secondary dressing to hold a primary in place.   
  • Hydrocolloid dressings, which are made of gel-forming materials that absorb exudate and protect the wound from external contaminants. 
  • Foam dressings, which are highly absorbent and can handle large amounts of wound drainage. They help maintain a moist environment, protect the wound from contamination, and provide cushioning for added patient comfort. 
  • Alginate dressings, which have excellent absorptive properties and are useful for heavily exuding wounds. 
  • Antimicrobial dressings, which contain agents that help prevent or manage infection in the wound.  
  • Compression dressings, which are used for managing venous ulcers or conditions where compression is required to improve circulation. They help reduce swelling, improve blood flow, and promote healing. 
  • Collagen dressings, which come in many forms and properties, are used to aid in the wound healing process.   
  • Gauze dressings, a breathable and absorbent material that helps absorb excess moisture and provides a protective layer over the wound site. 

Nuances About Dressings in the HME Market 

It’s also important to know the nuances of the dressing regulations in the HME market before getting into the business. 

  1. If a patient is being seen by home health or on a home health episode, the home health agency is responsible for their dressings (excluding negative pressure wound therapy dressing kits.) 
  2. For a Medicare patient to qualify for surgical dressings, one of two things must happen regarding the wound: 
    • The dressings are covered for treatment of a wound caused by or treated by a surgical procedure, OR 
    • Surgical dressings are required after debridement of a wound. 
  3. Certain items may or may not be covered by Medicare. The following items are not covered by Medicare, but if the patient wants them, they can always purchase them for cash:
    • First aid-type bandages 
    • Small adhesive bandages (band-aid type) 
    • Skin sealants or barriers 
    • Wound cleansers or irrigating solutions 
    • Solutions to moisten gauze (i.e., saline) 
    • Topical antiseptics or topical antibiotics 
    • Enzymatic debriding agents, gauze, or other dressings used to clean or debride a wound 
    • Silicone Gel Sheets 
    • Non-elastic binder for extremity

Surgical Dressings Guide by VGM Wound Care 

If you are thinking about providing dressings, the Surgical Dressings Guide can help! It begins by asking important questions before the process even begins. Are you already doing dressings? This guide is an excellent resource to remind you and your wound care team of the coverage criteria, definitions, and rules of all things related to surgical dressings. Also included in this guide are some documentation/order requirements, coding and billing tips, and reimbursement guidance, ensuring that you have the necessary information and support to maximize reimbursement opportunities and optimize your revenue. Finally, there is guidance on where to market your services.  

Expanding your HME business to include surgical dressings can open new doors for growth and success. The Surgical Dressings Guide can help you embrace the opportunity to provide comprehensive wound care solutions while strengthening your business and enhancing patient care. 

For any question, contact Heather Trumm, Director of VGM Wound Care, at heather.trumm@vgm.com


  1. complex rehab
  2. hme
  3. vgm
  4. wound care

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