NCART picks up co-sponsors

Monday, July 31, 2006

WASHINGTON - A May congressional fly-in helped NCART convince three legislators to co-sponsor its bill to exempt complex rehab products from competitive bidding.
The bill, sponsored by Rep. Ron Lewis, R-Ky., now has support from Reps. Doc Hasting, R-Wash.; Melissa Hart, R-Pa.; and Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., according to Sharon Hildebrand, NCART's executive director.
"Next, we're targeting people on the Ways and Means and Energy and Commerce committees, as well as the Bipartisan Disability Caucus," she said.
Supporters of H.R. 4994 argue that complex rehab and assistive technology products are evaluated, fitted, configured, adjusted or programmed to meet unique needs, making them inappropriate for competitive bidding.
NCART plans to spend the summer months conducting grassroots efforts to enlist rehab providers outside of its membership to lobby for the bill, Hildebrandt said.
"We need to expand to rehab technology companies and suppliers: RTSs, CRTSs, ATSs, ATPs," she said. "We need to reach out to everyone we can."
Also, NCART plans to distribute materials that will help providers request and conduct meetings with their representatives.