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ATLANTA - This year’s annual Homecare Champion Award will go to brothers Joey Tart and Billy Tart, co-founders of Family Medical Supply, Inc., a home oxygen and home medical equipment company with 17 locations throughout central and eastern North Carolina.

The Homecare Champion Award recognizes AAHomecare members who have made exceptional contributions to the homecare community throughout their careers. A Homecare Champion embodies the spirit of service and caring that are hallmarks of successful leaders in the industry.

Joey, who serves as president at Family Medical, along with Billy, the COO and vice president, have had many Capitol Hill visits, including fruitful meetings with staff members who work with Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC), a well-known advocate for the HME industry. “They understand our industry,” says Joey Tart. “Overall, the perception of the industry, among legislators, has improved.”

Beth Bowen, executive director of the North Carolina Association for Medical Equipment Services, nominated the Tart brothers for the award.  Bowen points out that while the brothers operate numerous locations in the Tar Heel state, they still manage to regularly engage their legislators.

“Their advocacy is helped by their community involvement,” she says. “Anyone who is an elected official in their district pays attention, because they are well respected and work hard. Joey and Billy are professionals when it comes to presenting their case, and presenting the industry’s issues, to people who may or may not understand those issues.”

Tom Ryan, president and CEO of AAHomecare, believes this year’s honorees are able to communicate effectively because they tell their story with passion and conviction. “Their story becomes the reason that the legislator decides it’s time to take action,” says Ryan. “The Homecare Champions in our industry lead with the belief that the patients we serve are the reasons we serve. The homecare champions lead by example, and never sit on the sidelines waiting for someone else to get the job done...The Tart brothers exemplify what this award is all about.”

Jay Witter, senior vice president of Public Policy for AAHomecare, agrees that the Tart brothers richly deserve the award, and says he hopes other providers will be inspired to follow their example. “Billy and Joey Tart have long recognized the value of developing strong relationships with their elected officials,” enthuses Witter. “They have incorporated these efforts into their business model, and because of their efforts, the whole industry is now benefiting.”

AAHomecare Chairman John J. Letizia, ATP, CAPS, who also serves as president of Laurel Medical Solutions, adds that the Joey and Billy are “all in” and helping the industry by developing strong relationships with Rep. Ellmers and Senator Richard Burr (R-NC). “They continue to lead an advocacy effort for our industry on a daily basis, as well as attend the AAHomecare legislative conference on a yearly basis,” says Letizia. “I am thankful to the Tart brothers for the commitment that they have made to furthering our industry.”

AAHomecare will present the awards to Joey and Billy Tart at the Stand Up for Homecare reception at Medtrade on Tuesday, Oct 27, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce.

The Stand Up for Homecare reception is the premiere networking event for the HME community, and raises funds that help build mutually supportive relationships with HME consumer/patient groups, as well as enabling outreach and educational efforts aimed at policymakers and the media.

Groups supported by Stand Up for Homecare funds include the National Council on Independent LivingParalyzed Veterans of AmericaUnited Spinal Association, and the American Association of People with Disabilities.  These funds have also supported the development of the Save My Medical Supplies program, which has recruited thousands of individuals to help promote HME advocacy priorities.

See more info at if you wish to attend the event.

The American Association for Homecare represents durable medical equipment providers, manufacturers, and others in the homecare community that serve the medical needs of millions of Americans who require oxygen systems, wheelchairs, medical supplies, inhalation drug therapy, and other medical equipment and services in their homes. Members operate more than 3,000 homecare locations in all 50 states. Visit


Gordon Barnes,, 202.372.0759