Master Medical Supplies Inc - info to assist you

This website is being maintained to continue assisting you - the patient, caregiver and/or medical professional. Check the "RESOURCE" page for specifics on products. Having foregone a paycheck/income from the business for 3 yrs trying to help you - putting myself at financial risk of losing my small condo - I still feel it is wrong to stop helping now - with limitations.  Thank you for allowing me to further assist you.

Any information provided here should be discussed with a medical professional and/or taken as your own final decision as this website is an information source as I provided in the store. The site also informs you where to find items whenever possible that can possibly help immediately not days later. This is a personal blog not a business entity site-information is used at your discretion. I am going to be doing this in my spare time.

My experience and passion is with helping patients and caregivers with medical supply product information. I continue to hope that a local Chicago hospital, nursing home or assisted living faciility, a chain pharmacy looking to increase their patient care area or another company that sees that patients do need a personal touch would be interested in my abilities.  

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The business began in 1983 as a source for patient and caregivers. A retail store establishment carrying goods that could be discussed and bought as needed at decent prices. Physican office supplies were added to supplement requests by local medical offices. The business became a center hub for vaccine availability between manufacturer and medical provider.

2003 began the slow transition from the dual purpose back to the original purpose. The changes to healthcare that one saw ahead were the guiding factor to the decision. 2005 allowed the business to transition to a retail shopping environment with full product displays. This allowed for multiple manufacturers for product availablility. Product discussion could occur between patients, caregivers, physicians and store staff to offer the best option for the patient.

2009-2010 increased the departure from medical provider needs as patients needed more assistance. Patient and medical provider dscussions seemed to have an increase in "go to any medical supply store" thoughts which increased patient stress yet additional information to those medical providers through courtesy of the patient elicited no additional interests.

2011-2012 continued the sending of information to medical providers offering assistance to their patients to ease the "go to any medical supply store" instructions. Saw an increase in the number of hospital patients being advised of the same and continued contacting them. Also searched for funding.

2013 began search for a manufacturer that carried the broad range of products patients that were available here and not elsewhere in the city to create a "exclusive brand type store".

One manufacturer in particular already had a huge majority of shelf and floor space for their product and had been advised of same over the years. This manufacturer "was not interested" although they could have carried about 90% easily and within the price points necessary. This type of brick and mortar "exclusive brand type store" (I'd say 15%-20%) would have to be non-exclusive based on items other manufacturers carried but the main one didn't.  What is interesting is that this main manufacturer created expensive signage for their brand but I've yet to see any chain use it as their literature pointed out its' use. Their signage concept would have worked with my business model already in place - but they just couldn't see it.(see letter below)  I've recently reviewed the local medicare approved contract suppliers and the Medline and Guardian products are not listed as being carried by those contractors. I recall when Guardian was THE #1 choice for physical therapist referrals. 

This business model of having a retail brick and mortar location in the heart of the city remains viable. The products carried are still being sought for and not found elsewhere in the city but needed and usually needed right away. Medical trade magazines are touting the retail sales as a necessity and wave of the future - something I understood years ago.

This model could work on a smaller scale in a retail environment in a big chain location to supplement the pharmacy as an additional step toward wellness and health. Whether opening as a stand-alone business or within a chain as a department - the business model I had been hired to develop in 1988 and had hoped to continue to develop into 2013 remains a viable model for patient assistance.  What it takes though is trained and compasionate staff who know the products and understand the need. It also required deeper pockets than what I had available to me in the end.

9.25.13 open letter

2014 copyright Master Medical Supplies Inc (3.1983-12.2013) & Karen Walaszek (ongoing). This site is for general information use to aid patients, caregivers and other interested parties with medical product need decisions. Final determination and proper use of same is ultimately determined by the reader for their best needs.