Advocacy

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Giving Rehabilitation Businesses a Voice

As rehabilitation providers much of our focus is on providing the best care possible to the patients we serve.  While devoting our time and energy to quality care we can lose sight of the ever-changing regulations effecting our reimbursement and the delivery of care to patients. We need someone who is looking out for our best interest and the best interest of our patients. Thus NARA created a Political Action Committee. Through the legislative efforts of the NARA Political Action Committee (PAC), NARA serves as a voice in the political arena and fights for patient access, reasonable compensation and the success of rehabilitation businesses.

NARA PAC


Legislation

NARA works to provide rehabilitation providers with information and advocacy efforts for legislation and regulations that directly impact their businesses and their ability to deliver quality care to patients. Our current legislative priorities include:

  • Upcoming rate adjustment for PTAs and OTAs under Part B Medicare  NARA opposes policies which will rebase fee schedule reimbursement for care provided by Physical Therapist Assistants and Occupational Therapy Assistants.  NARA believes reimbursement for assistants who are under the supervision of a physical therapist or occupational therapist should not be subject to a payment differential.  In this regard, it is noteworthy that there are not differentials for therapy assistants under Medicare A.

  • Access to Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) by Rehabilitation Agencies

    Currently rehabilitation providers which are required to use the uniform billing form (UB-04) are not able to participate in MIPS value-based payment model including such financial benefits which may accrue from such participation.  NARA supports legislation or policy changes that will allow rehabilitation agencies and other institutional rehabilitation providers to participate in this program.

  • Reducing Administrative Burden (S 1260)  NARA supports efforts to reduce administrative burden in the provision of care and the process of billing federally-funded health programs as well as efforts to increase efficiencies in the delivery of health services that reduce cost.  NARA supports data sharing, standardization of electronic medical records and outcome registries, reduction of complex billing requirements, simplification of coding and submission rules, and removal of burdensome prior authorization requirements. NARA supports the elimination of barriers for Medicare beneficiaries to optimize access to rehabilitative therapies.

  • Promote Rehabilitation Services as an Alternative to Opioids  NARA supports the CDC guidelines encouraging the use of nonpharmacological approaches to pain management including Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy.  NARA encourages policymakers to reduce barriers encouraging individuals with muscle skeletal conditions to use Physical and Occupational therapies as alternatives to Opioids.

    NARA believes a multidisciplinary team approach, early conservative treatment, and education for primary care providers and the general public must be part of a comprehensive strategy to combat the opioid crisis.

  • Access to Rehabilitation Providers  NARA supports legislation that will improve access to rehabilitative services to the general population.   This can be aided by increasing the health provider workforce in rural and medically underserved areas by adding physical therapists and occupational therapists to federal student loan repayment programs, expanding opportunities in public programs for direct access to rehabilitative therapy services, addressing physical therapy workforce issues by including cost of education support federal programs to reduce student loan burden and expanding coverage and payment for rehabilitation services delivered via digital health and telehealth and reduce out-of-pocket costs for nonpharmacological rehabilitation services.

  • Telehealth and Digital Health Services  NARA supports the use of telehealth and digital health services to improve access for rehabilitation services.  NARA encourages policymakers to remove barriers and develop compensation models to promote telehealth and digital health services for rehabilitation services.  NARA supports legislation requiring Medicare and federal health plans to provide parity for both coverage and payment for rehabilitation services provided through telehealth services.   NARA also promotes legislation that supports the utilization of electronic health records by rehabilitation professionals

  • Medicare Home Health Flexibility Act (S 1725/HR 3127)  NARA supports legislation allowing occupational therapists to initiate (open) home health services under Medicare A.  Occupational therapists have the necessary skills and education to assess a patient and complete Oasis documentation to begin home health services. 

 

Click here for a Printable List of NARA Legislative Priorities.

 

To learn more about each of these legislative priorities, please call us at  1-866-839-7710.


The NARA Political Action Committee

The NARA Political Action Committee (NARA-PAC) serves as a way to allow individuals, providers, corporations and unions the opportunity to share a common political goal and voluntarily contribute money to affect change in the national political landscape. NARA-PAC serves as a separate fund that is established by NARA, and you can contribute as much as you like. Contributions should be made via personal checks.*

NARA-PAC is made up of our members and other individuals who want to affect positive change in the rehabilitation industry and for the industry’s patients. The purposes of NARA-PAC are to:

  • Give donations to candidates for national office and elected officials who demonstrate their support for the rehabilitation industry, practitioners and patients. These donations are given without consideration of political party affiliation.
  • Increase and improve Congress’ awareness about national issues that impact the rehabilitation industry and patients.
  • Establish an active and effective mechanism for NARA membership in affecting the federal government policies on NARA issues.
  • Raise money through voluntary contributions of NARA members and using that money to positively affect the national political process.

Contribute to NARA’s Advocacy Effort

Whether you’re interested in learning more about NARA’s legislative priorities or making a donation to NARA-PAC, you can get involved with NARA by calling 1-866-839-7710.