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CRT on Congress: ‘We don’t want to get lost on their radar’

CRT on Congress: ‘We don’t want to get lost on their radar’

Don ClaybackWASHINGTON – NCART and NRRTS are gearing up for their CRT Virtual Congressional Fly-In on Sept. 14, with a top priority of securing coverage for seat elevation and standing systems.  

CMS has committed to seeking public comments on a request to reconsider the national coverage determination for mobility assistive equipment to include these systems no later than August, queuing up a key talking point for the virtual meetings with lawmakers. 

“It will be a good opportunity for people to talk to their members of Congress about weighing in that this is an important benefit that should be available,” said Don Clayback, executive director of NCART. “We’re not looking for legislation; we’re looking for them to weigh in.” 

That kind of pressure works: CMS committed to the next step in reconsidering the NCD following a meeting with Sens. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., and Rep, Jim Langevin, R-R.I., among other lawmakers. 

Talking points during the fly-in will also include the increased costs of doing business for providers and the importance of preserving the telehealth option for PTs and OTs conducting wheelchair evaluations. 

“It’s also just an opportunity to remind them about CRT, in general,” Clayback said. “We don’t want to get lost on their radar.” 

NCART and NRRT are trying to make it as easy as possible for stakeholders to participate in the fly-in by making it free, thanks to support from sponsors like Alliance Rehab and Medical Equipment, NSM, Numotion, Quantum, Reliable Medical, Rifton, Permobil, Invacare, Merits, MK Battery and ATLAS Technology. 

“And once they sign up, we take it from there,” Clayback said. “We arrange their appointments, and we host an advance prep webinar and a state delegation webinar.” 

Stakeholders will lay the groundwork for the fly-in during CRT Awareness Week on Aug. 15-19. Each day of that week, different stakeholders – users, clinicians, providers, manufacturers – will take over social media platforms to “share the message” about complex rehab using the hashtag #crtawareness. 

“We’re never going to be successful until we’re all on the same page, together,” said Weesie Walker, executive director of NRRTS.


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