AOTA, AOTPAC, _OT Associations….jklmnopqrst

Caption: Julie and Anna wearing the OT hoodies they got at AOTA conference in St. Louis!

Some of you may wonder sometimes why I’m so rabid about exposing the wonders of occupational therapy to the masses. Part of it is because I really just think it’s amazing and want everybody to know!! But another reason is that occupational therapy is a threatened profession! Occupational therapists could go extinct if we don’t have people watching out for our interests!


This is where AOTA (American Occupational Therapy Association), the AOTPAC (American Occupational Therapy Political Action Committee), and your state OT associations, come in. They protect our investments in the career of occupational therapy. They are constantly monitoring political issues that may affect the future of occupational therapy. They also serve as advocates, and just in general serve as our mother hens of the OT world! They want their little OT babies to stay safe and happy!

AOTA, AOTPAC, and your national state associations (in my case, TOTA), need the support of the occupational therapists as well, however. It’s a two-way street – they can’t support us unless they get some support themselves. That is one huge reason it is important to be a member of your state OT association and national association. The benefits you get from such a membership (networking, access to invaluable resources, etc), more than make up the cost. It’s especially cheap to become a member as a student!

While these associations can always use financial support, it’s just as important, if not more important, that their members stay aware of the political/legal issues affecting OT. For example, it may not seem like a big deal if physical therapists ask for a little change in their scope of practice…well, it IS a big deal if it means that they can encroach into the occupational therapy’s scope of practice!!

Today I received an e-mail from AOTPAC, discussing “Medicare Issues Ignored by Congress!” It includes a possible therapy cap and negative changes in the fee schedule. These two things could seriously handicap OT as a profession.

The following is a quote from the e-mail:

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Help your clients get the OT services they deserve, protect your rights to appropriate payment from Medicare, and stand up for your profession!

Contribute to AOTPAC today. It is the legal and authorized way to participate in the political process and support those who support occupational therapy. AOTPAC’s Board of Directors decides how best to use your contribution to have the most impact for occupational therapy legislative issues. Be part of that process! Make your contribution now and defend occupational therapy!

Make your contribution on-line via the secure AOTA Web site at: http://www.aota.org/aotpac or mail the attached form with your check or money order payable to AOTPAC.

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They also ask that you visit the AOTA Legislative Action Center and send an e-mail to your Members of Congress about these and other important issues!

Thanks for sticking around for a “heavy” post. I am definitely not the most political person, but I think we need to remember that we owe a lot to our national and state associations and political action committee!

Update: Here is the full e-mail, I got permission to use it, with one caveat. AOTPAC by law is not allowed to solict individuals who are not AOTA members, if you are not a member, please disregard that portion of the e-mail!

Subject: Medicare Issues Ignored by Congress!
Dear Colleague:
Congress cut critical corrections to the Medicare program from legislation in September, posing a serious threat to two issues essential for occupational therapy. Medicare caps on occupational therapy will go back in effect on January 1, 2008 unless Congress acts this year. The Medicare fee schedule will be cut nearly 10 percent in 2008 if no action is taken.

Fixes for the therapy cap and fee schedule were stripped from the State Children’s Health Insurance Program bill. AOTA worked hard and long to get fixes included and now we must continue to make sure Congress takes action NOW. Without your contribution to AOTPAC and your letters to Congress WE CAN’T BE SUCCESSFUL!

Without action, patient care will be restricted and your payment will be reduced significantly. AOTA is working on Capitol Hill to ensure Representatives and Senators know that the Medicare cap on occupational therapy and changes to the fee schedule must be made this year. But we can’t do it alone! Your contribution to AOTPAC increases the impact of the occupational therapy voice! It helps to support friends of occupational therapy and gives us opportunities to educate about the need for a solution to the cap and the fee schedule this year.

Help your clients get the OT services they deserve, protect your rights to appropriate payment from Medicare, and stand up for your profession!

Contribute to AOTPAC today. It is the legal and authorized way to participate in the political process and support those who support occupational therapy. AOTPAC’s Board of Dire
ctors decides how best to use your contribution to have the most impact for occupational therapy legislative issues. Be part of that process! Make your contribution now and defend occupational therapy!

Make your contribution on-line via the secure AOTA Web site at: http://www.aota.org/aotpac or mail the attached form with your check or money order payable to AOTPAC.

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Also, check out this website: http://www.aota.org/Practitioners/Advocacy/AOTPAC.aspx


Oct 10, 2007 | Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: 4

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