Advocacy

 

FEDERAL ADVOCACY UPDATE SEPTEMBER 2022

 

 

 

Text - H.R.8181 - 117th Congress (2021-2022): Optimizing Postpartum Outcomes Act of 2022 | Congress.gov | Library of Congress This summer the APTA-supported "Optimizing Postpartum Outcomes Act" (H.R. 8181) was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Reps. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., and Lisa Blunt Rochester, D-Del. The bipartisan legislation is aimed at expanding care and access under Medicaid to pelvic physical therapy for mothers in the postpartum period. 

 

Lymphedema Treatment Act Also in the House, the APTA-supported Lymphedema Treatment Act took a major step with the legislation being passed by the House Energy & Commerce Committee earlier this month. 

 

News | Lawmakers Urge Veterans Affairs to Raise Pay, Expand Roles of PTs and PTAs | APTA Also in June we saw a win for physical therapists and PTAs who work in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. APTA-supported report language was included in the proposed FY 2023 appropriations bill for the VA, which included report language urging the department "to examine how more competitive pay for physical therapists and physical therapist assistants can help with hiring and retention." Additionally, the lawmakers recommend that the department open its Health Professional Scholarship Program to PTs. The appropriations package will be put before the House and Senate

 

Advocacy = Selfcare

 

Advocacy is selfcare. Feelings of burnout and fatigue are being felt across all practice setting.  Having a voice and power in decision making is one way to combat feelings of burnout.  The act of practicing small amounts of advocacy can give you feeling of purpose, accomplishment, contribution, connection, and power, which have a positive health benefit. We can’t make change without voices and numbers.  If you believe that physical therapists and physical therapy assistants should have a voice in making rules and laws about physical therapy practice, then please take action.  The APTA Action App makes it easy and simple.  Download the App today!

 

 

 

ADVOCACY AFFAIRS – July 2022

 

How to Get Involved! 

One way that you can easily advocate and take an active role in the PT profession at the federal and state level is to download the APTA Action app.  While we encourage everyone to support the PT profession through their membership with APTA, you do not need to be an APTA member to use the app and have a voice.  Taking action via the app typically takes 1-2 minutes and has the latest information on legislation that affects you.  Below is the link to download the app:

https://apps.apple.com/us/app/apta-action/id727008540         

 

Federal Affairs Update 

Advocacy = Selfcare

Advocacy is selfcare. Feelings of burnout and fatigue are being felt across all practice setting.  Having a voice and power in decision making is one way to combat feelings of burnout.  The act of practicing small amounts of advocacy can give you feeling of purpose, accomplishment, contribution, connection, and power, which have a positive health benefit. We can’t make change without voices and numbers.  If you believe that physical therapists and physical therapy assistants should have a voice in making rules and laws about physical therapy practice, then please take action.  The APTA Action App makes it easy and simple. 

Prior Authorization: 

APTA supported bill, Improving Seniors’ Timely Access to Care Act (H.R. 3173/S.3018), aims to address prior authorization under Medicare Advantage plans.  

Position Paper: Improving Seniors' Timely Access to Care | APTA 

Pelvic Health: 

Rep. Jamie Herrera Beutler (R-WA) and Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE) plan to introduce the Optimizing Postpartum Outcomes Act in the near future.  This bipartisan legislation instructs CMS to issue guidance on coverage under Medicaid and CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program) for pelvic floor services, including pelvic floor physical therapy, performed during the postpartum or neonatal period.  More information will be forthcoming.  

Telehealth update: 

As of right now, physical therapists have not secured permanent telehealth coverage.  Physical therapist is currently covered under the telehealth waiver under the public health emergency.  Initially, the telehealth coverage was scheduled to end abruptly once the PHE is declared over, which could be as early as this July, however it is possible that this will be extended again.  The US House just passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2022 which will give the profession a 5-month blanket extension of the current Medicare telehealth waiver after the end of the PHE.  Securing this extension has been critical to avoid a sudden drop-ff of coverage, and to set the stage for a permanent or longer extension of the telehealth waiver.   

Position Paper: Expanded Telehealth Access Act of 2021 | APTA  

Allied Health Work Diversity Act 

The PREVENT Pandemics Act (an Act that focuses on strengthening the nation’s preparedness and response systems in the wake of COVID-19) contains APTA supported language from our Allied Workforce Diversity Act in addressing social detriments to health. 

Position Paper: The Allied Health Work Diversity Act | APTA 

Contact our Federal Affairs Liaison, Amanda Packard 

 

 APTA House of Delegates 

The APTA NH is getting ready for the upcoming House of Delegates.  A virtual session will take place on July 30th and the in-person session will be August 13th – 15th in Washington D.C.  Your President and Chief Delegate participated in the NE Caucus the weekend of June 11th, in New Brunswick, NJ, alongside representatives from NY, NJ, ME, VT, RI, PA, DE, and DC.   We discussed the current motions to the house and the candidates running for national office. 

There are twenty-two motions currently being formulated.  The topics vary, such as: direction of PTAs, postpartum PT, management of BP, direct-to-employer services, and a charge to explore an association healthcare plan.  The second iteration will be out in July.  

The slate of candidates is up and biographies are ready to view.  https://www.apta.org/apta-and-you/leadership-and-governance/nominations-and-elections/slate.  The interview videos will be posted on July 1st.  

If you have any questions or input on any of the candidates or proposals, please contact Chief Delegate, Eydie Kendall via email: eakendall1@plymouth.edu

 

APTA National Advocacy Highlight 

Lawmakers Urge Veterans Affairs to Raise Pay, Expand Roles of PTs and PTAs 

Did you know that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is the largest single employer of physical therapists?  Physical therapy is increasingly being recognized as an important pain treatment alternative to opioids. It is also being acknowledged that having greater access to physical therapy is critically important for patients, including veterans. 

The House Appropriations Committee is urging the Department of Veterans Affairs to improve patient access to physical therapists in the VA health care system. This desire is being backed up by language in the appropriations package calling for increasing pay, expanding the roles of PTs and PTAs in a range of settings including primary care, and allowing PTs to qualify for a special scholarship program. The House Appropriations Committee package will go before the House and Senate later this year, most likely in September 2022, with a high likelihood of passing. Be encouraged by this anticipated APTA-supported Advocacy Win! 

Please follow this link to read the detailed article. 

https://www.apta.org/news/2022/07/05/va-appropriations 

Contact APTA NH Board Member, Tracie Adams


 

 


May 2022

 

How to Get Involved!

One way that you can easily advocate and take an active role in the PT profession at the federal and state level is to download the APTA Action app.  While we encourage everyone to support the PT profession through their membership with APTA, you do not need to be an APTA member to use the app and have a voice.  Taking action via the app typically takes 1-2 minutes and has the latest information on legislation that affects you.  Below is the link to download the APTA Action App: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/apta-action/id727008540                

 

Federal Affairs Update

Advocacy = Selfcare

Advocacy is selfcare. Feelings of burnout and fatigue are being felt across all practice setting.  Having a voice and power in decision making is one way to combat feelings of burnout.  The act of practicing small amounts of advocacy can give you feeling of purpose, accomplishment, contribution, connection, and power, which have a positive health benefit. We can’t make change without voices and numbers.  If you believe that physical therapists and physical therapy assistants should have a voice in making rules and laws about physical therapy practice, then please take action.  The APTA Action App makes it easy and simple.

Telehealth update:

As of right now, physical therapists have not secured permanent telehealth coverage.  Physical therapist is currently covered under the telehealth waiver under the public health emergency.  Initially, the telehealth coverage was scheduled to end abruptly once the PHE is declared over, which could be as early as this July.  The US House just passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2022 which will give the profession a 5-month blanket extension of the current Medicare telehealth waiver after the end of the PHE.  Securing this extension has been critical to avoid a sudden drop-ff of coverage, and to set the stage for a permanent or longer extension of the telehealth waiver.  

Position Paper: Expanded Telehealth Access Act of 2021 | APTA

Combating Burnout and Addressing Mental Health of Healthcare Workers

The Legislation | Dr. Lorna Breen Heroes Foundation (drlornabreen.org)

APTA Fit for Practice Initiative | APTA

Allied Health Work Diversity Act

The PREVENT Pandemics Act (an Act that focuses on strengthening the nation’s preparedness and response systems in the wake of COVID-19) contains APTA supported language from our Allied Workforce Diversity Act in addressing social detriments to health.

Position Paper: The Allied Health Work Diversity Act | APTA

 Contact our Federal Affairs Liaison, Amanda Packard 


 

State Affairs Update 

The NH state legislature continues to work through the many bills under consideration this session.   APTA NH has been actively following many of these bills and at this point in the session were are down to following about 20 bills. Some of the remaining active bills under consideration that we are following are listed below:

Here are updates on three we are watching: 

  • HB1080: Relative to the Rights of Conscience for Medical Professionals.
  • HB1390: Relative to Access to Language Translation Services in Telemedicine
  • HB1624: Relative to Students with Disabilities Participating in Co-curricular Activities and Making an Appropriation, Therefore
  • SB 277: Relative to Emergency or Temporary Healthcare Licenses

For more information on these and other pending bills, go to www.nh.gov then put your cursor over the Government tab at the top and click on NH State Legislature.  You can enter bill numbers like the ones above or do a keyword search for bills to access more information. Please feel free to reach out to us at www.nhapta.org for more information or to get involved. 

Contact our State Legislative Committee contact, Mark Mailloux 


APTA House of Delegates Update 

The APTA is gearing up for the House of Delegates (HOD), August 14th and 15th.  Your NH reps will attend the NE Caucus on June 11th, in person! 

There has been a bit of activity on the Hub (APTA’s On-line Community Forums) with respect to potential motions that may make it to the HOD.  Topics are varied, everything from the gender pay gap to Continuing Education standards, with more to come as these ideas are slowly taking shape.  The first packet of information containing motions will be distributed to members on May 25th

The 2022 APTA officer elections slate of candidates has been posted to the APTA website.  The NE caucus has plans to collaborate for interviews, so your NH reps will be teaming up with VT, ME, MA, CT & RI, starting at the end of April.  We’ll provide updates as the election prep progresses.     

To provide any feedback you may have, please contact our Chief Delegate, Eydie Kendall.

 


 

APTA National Advocacy Highlight 

Here’s what the data show about the impacts of physical therapy:

  • Physical therapy is essential for many in their recovery from COVID-19. COVID-19 can strike anyone, and its effects range from being undetectable to requiring mechanical ventilation. When people are hospitalized and are just beginning to recover from the most severe effects of the novel coronavirus, physical therapists are helping. And physical therapy will continue to be needed by some long after they leave the hospital.
  • Physical therapy is effective in reducing pain. For example, a growing body of evidence for physical therapist treatment of low back pain includes a 2018 study published in Health Services Research that shows that using it as a first-line approach not only saves money but also dramatically reduces the chance of receiving a prescription for dangerous opioids.
  • Physical activity prevents disease. For example, people who regularly walk 8,000 steps a day are significantly less likely to die from cardiovascular disease, cancer, or any cause than those who take 4,000 steps or fewer, according to a March 2020 study published in JAMA.
  • Physical therapists treat people where they are. Physical therapists provide care to people across the lifespan and in many settings, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, homes, schools, sports teams and fitness facilities, the U.S. Armed Services, veterans facilities, work settings, and nursing homes. About 90 commercial payers and Medicare have allowed physical therapist services to be delivered via telehealth during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

The physical therapy profession has much to contribute to the health of society.

APTA urges Congress and the Administration to:

  • Improve patient outcomes by eliminating barriers to health care services
  • Enact policies that empower all people regardless of where they are born, live, learn, work, play, worship, and age to live healthy and independent lives
  • Improve patient outcomes and patient satisfaction by improving health services delivery.
  • Prioritize research and clinical innovation to advance the science, effectiveness, and efficacy of physical therapist evaluation and management to optimize patient health, well-being, and recovery.

Contact APTA NH Board Member, Tracie Adams

 

 

 APTA

APTA NH PO Box 459
Tolland, CT 06084
(857) 702-9915
nhapta@libertysquaregroup.com