Wednesday, June 30, 2004

WASHINGTON - As the dust begins to settle, it’s becoming more clear how AAHomecare’s rehab council may operate along side a group of providers who defected earlier this year to form their own coalition.

The main focus of AAHomecare’s Rehab and Assistive Technology Council will be to act as a coordinator and leader when it comes to federal legislative and regulatory issues that affect rehab providers, said Matt Burke, RATC’s new chairman.

The National Coalition for Assistive Rehab Technology appears intent on tackling Medicaid. Last month, NCART held a Medicaid Summit in Washington and unveiled a Web-based initiative to help rehab providers beat back efforts to cut reimbursement and respond to other Medicaid initiatives.

Addressing Medicaid issues quick and effectively is key, say NCART members. Many states targeted the program for cuts as a way to reduce budget deficits, and for many rehab providers, Medicaid represents their biggest chunk of business.

Among other things, NCART will post on its Web site (www.ncart.us) sample strategies and action plans that can be tailored to a state’s individual needs.

“We want to create a template for people to use, so that when an issue pops up in Connecticut, for example, they’ve got all the documents and everything they need to go after it,” said NCART member Gary Gilberti.