Reach out to Congress to Support Complex Rehab Technology Act
The National Coalition for Assistive and Rehab Technology (NCART) wants you to join the fight to support legislation for a separate benefit category for complex rehab technology.
The legislation, H.R. 4378, would protect the benefit that provides individualized wheelchairs, power wheelchairs, and seating and positioning systems.
Summer is a good time to reach out to Congress members because everyone is gearing up for the election. The goal is to generate enough support to push the bill into a larger piece of legislation in October.
Currently, the following House members are official co-sponsors of H.R. 4378.
- Devin Nunes, R-Calif.
- Linda Sánchez, D-Calif.
- Jared Polis, D-Colo.
- John Larson, D-Conn.
- Bill Posey, R-Fla.
- Ted Deutch, D-Fla.
- John Lewis, D-Ga.
- Richard Neal, D-Ma.
- Dutch Ruppersberger, D-Md.
- Gregg Harper, R-Miss.
- Charles Rangel, D-N.Y.
- Maurice Hinchey, D-N.Y.
- Louise Slaughter, D-N.Y.
- Joseph Crowley, D-N.Y. (sponsor)
- James Langevin, D-R.I.
- Doc Hastings, R-Wash.
Follow these steps to urge your representatives and senators to sign on as co-sponsors of H.R. 4378 or a companion bill once introduced in the Senate.
- Look online for resources including the “Intro to CRT” video, various advocacy materials, and a link to send an e-mail directly to your Congress member and senators. The site also has a scoreboard to see who is already signed on.
- Ask your Congress member if he/she has questions about the bill. Feel free to reach out the NCART for help with this question. The organization provides this explanation for the most common question: What does the bill cost?
“Since the bill was just introduced in April, we do not have a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) score yet. To obtain a CBO score we need to get more co-sponsors behind this bill so the CBO will make it a priority. However, to address this question the SBC Steering Committee hired a well-respected Washington, D.C., economic consulting firm, Dobson & Davanzo, to use a CBO model and develop a score. Their report estimated the cost at about $5 million a year (or $56 million over 10 years). We recognize cost is a factor and will work to make changes should the CBO score be higher. Based on that, we are asking for co-sponsors to sign on with that assumption and recognizing the merits of the legislation. It’s important to note that this cost does not factor in any of the savings that will result if people have better access to CRT. Better access will reduce the major healthcare costs that result from such things as development of pressure sores, progression of orthopedic issues, increased hospitalizations, etc.”
- Ask your member to become an official co-sponsor by contacting Nicole Cohen in Congressman Joe Crowley’s office at 202-225-3965 or by e-mail. Even if your member declares that he/she will support the legislation and vote for it, he/she still needs to sign on as an official co-sponsor.