Legislative Update - Capital Hill | Jul 5, 2013

Dearest Colleagues:

This is a recap of events that occurred earlier this year on Capitol Hill. I apologize for the delay in providing this update, and hope that I have been able to maintain a certain level of transparency regarding the events through my summary and participation in the last NDPTA meeting over Go-To-Meeting. For those of you that were unable to attend the meeting, I have provided this summary for the newsletter.

I had the distinct pleasure earlier this spring of representing North Dakota's physical therapists on Capitol Hill regarding several measures that would directly influence our profession. Specifically, I addressed the APTA's priorities for the sustainable growth rate (SGR) reform, the Medicare access to rehabilitation services act (H.R. 713/S. 367), or the repeal of the therapy cap on outpatient rehabilitation services, and lastly, the physical therapist workforce and patient access act (H.R. 1252/S. 602).

I want you to know that I sincerely relayed this information to our representatives, and I am grateful for the opportunity to do so. To summarize, I specifically met with the medical aide/advisor in Senator Hoeven's office and Congressman Cramer's office, and I did get the opportunity to have a pleasant meeting with Senator Heidi Heitkamp and her advisor. We discussed the measures in depth, and I shared some specific examples in which some of my patients have been directly affected by the limitations imposed by the Medicare cap. The message was very well received by all parties. I am currently in the process of sending out a request to Senator Heitkamp for a practice visit to my clinic in order for her to witness firsthand the impact our profession makes on the Medicare population. I will keep you all informed of the outcome of this request and visit as it occurs. If any of you desire to set up a practice visit with any of our state's representatives, please do not hesitate to contact me at (701) 277-8448, and I will help you get organized! In the meantime, please continue your efforts to spread the word to all physical therapists to contact their representatives regarding these important measures that will directly influence us in our practice. If you need assistance on how to properly phrase your request, please visit the APTA website and click on the Advocacy tab. There you will find some great references on the various topics. Have a great summer!


Chris Kraemer PT, MPT, OCS