sATP: 'It's not a formal title'


While eating her breakfast on Jan. 26, Laura Cohen read a brief in the January 2010 issue of HME News titled “CMS differentiates between ATP, sATP.” Then she called me.

The brief details an article published in December by Noridian Administrative Services, the DME MAC for Jurisdiction D, on the difference between assistive technology professionals (ATPs) that work as clinicians and those that work as suppliers. The article refers to ATPs that work as suppliers as sATPs.

“It’s not a recognized title,” said Cohen, coordinator of The Clinician Task Force and chair of RESNA’s Professional Standards Board. “ATP is a trademarked title, and RESNA would not support that.”

Cohen explains that, the way she read the article, Noridian used sATP to abbreviate an ATP that works for a supplier, not to create a new designation.

If you’re wondering what the big deal is, it’s this: Part of the reason RESNA combined its assistive technology supplier (ATS) and assistive technology practitioner (the original ATP) certifications a year ago was to stop people from attaching certain roles to the certifications.

“A certification demonstrates competency and a scope of knowledge, but it does not give you permission to do something that otherwise you’re not licensed to do,” Cohen said.

When I asked Cohen whether she or RESNA had contacted Noridian about its use of sATP, she said, “No.”

“We don’t want to make a big deal out of it, but if it persists, we will,” she said. “It’s not their title to retitle.”

Liz Beaulieu