NCPTA sent 11 representatives, including 7 students, to the APTA Federal Advocacy Forum April 29 – May 1, 2018 to visit with their U.S Representatives and Senators from North Carolina. Sunday evening attendees participated in a town hall meeting with APTA Government Affairs staff and Monday was spent learning about the issues presently facing therapists in Washington and preparing for Hill visits on Tuesday.
Representing NCPTA were President Kyle Covington, former NCPTA President Dean McCall, Nominating Chair and PPS representative Eileen Carter, and Executive Director Nancy Garland. Besides President Covington, a professor at Duke, 3 Duke DPT students attended the forum – Andrew Batchhelder, Ben Schmidt and Katie Scaff. Two DPT students from Winston Salem State University (WSSU) served as APTA key contacts to Rep. Virginia Fox – Sam Lucier and Jonathan McHone. Dean McCall, program director of the PTA program at Martin Community College, brought 2 PTA students from Martin – Evan Singlar and Alex Pearson.
North Carolina Senator Tom Tillis won the APTA Public Service Award for including a provision in the Defense Authorization Bill that allows for the coverage of services provided by PTAs under Tricare. Tillis was also a sponsor of the bill to repeal the Medicare cap. PTA services will not be covered, however, until regulations are issued in the next year or two allowing for coverage.
The North Carolina delegation met with Rep. Foxx’s office to discuss the PROSPER Act which would limit the amount of federal student loans that students could receive. This limitation would adversely affect doctoral PT students. Rep. Foxx, Chair of the House Committee on Education and Workforce, introduced the PROSPER Act. Since Rep. Foxx was not in Washington during the Forum, the WSSU students and faculty will visit with her in Winston-Salem and will invite her to visit the WSSU PT program.
When visiting with their legislators, the NC representatives thanked the legislators who had supported repealing the cap. Other issues that were discussed with the Members of Congress were how PTs are part of the solution for the opioid crisis, not part of the problem, and the Sports Licensure Clarity Act which would provide licensure clarification and legal protections for PTs who practice across state lines when they travel with professional and collegiate teams or other athletes.
NCPTA Nominating Committee Soliciting Candidates
The NCPTA Nominating Committee has been very busy soliciting names for this year’s elections. They are asking you to consider placing your name on the 2018 Slate for the following positions: