imPACt, April, 2013
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Lobby Day

As this edition of imPACt is delivered, we are entering into the final stages of preparation for Lobby Day 2013. I am very happy to tell you that we have over 300 of our colleagues pre-registered to attend the event.

There is a new spirit of cooperation and a strong sense of renewed energy on the part of all districts, SIGs and the membership as a whole. I believe this will translate into a Lobby Day to remember. Although online registration has closed, you may register on-site. If you need transportation to Albany, please contact the Chapter office at 1-800-459-4489 and they will relay the information to the appropriate Legislative Liaison.

I’m sure this will be a very productive and successful Lobby Day!
 

Legislation

District Legislative Liaisons are busy scheduling legislator appointments for both the Senate and Assembly. To date our High Co-pay Bill (A1666/S2319) Cahill/DeFrancisco has 53 Assembly sponsors and 4 Senate sponsors. The bill is currently before the Insurance Committee in each house. It is our hope that we will finally be able to move it out of committee this year.

Our PTA Bill (S3555) Griffo has 6 Senate sponsors. At this time, we are actively seeking Assembly sponsorship. As always our goal during our legislative meetings is to articulate and garner support and sponsorship for our bills in both houses. I believe that this year’s contingent will be successful in its mission based on the level of dedication and enthusiasm that I have experienced over the past few months.

NY Health Benefit Exchange Releases Invitation to Participate to Insurers

The New York Health Benefit Exchange released an “Invitation to Participate” to insurers for purposes of qualifying insurers to participate as qualified health plans in New York’s Exchange. Insurers must have submitted all required information by April 15, 2013, including provider network information, rates and forms. The Exchange intends to send notice of certification to participate by July 15, 2013 and those plans that are certified may accept applications for health insurance coverage from individuals and small employer groups starting on October 1, 2013 for coverage effective January 1, 2014.

NYPTA has met with Exchange personnel to advocate for the interests of the physical therapy profession, including advocating for a robust physical therapy benefit and expressing concerns over high co-pays in the commercial marketplace. The Invitation to Participate sets forth the benefit design that insurers participating in the Exchange must provide. For physical therapy, copayments will range from $15 to $30 depending on the type of plan purchased, and the benefit is 60 visits per condition per lifetime. Based on conversations with Exchange personnel, the “per condition” limitation is intended to apply to each injury or episode of care. NYPTA will continue to advocate for the profession and monitor activity related to the State’s rollout of the Exchange.

Legislation to Expand Athletic Trainers’ Scope of Practice Introduced

Legislation, S.4465 (Grisanti)/A.6678 (Lavine) has been introduced to expand the scope of practice of athletic trainers. The legislation would move athletic trainers from a certified to a licensed profession, eliminate the language that athletic trainers limit treatment to athletic injuries, and eliminate the prohibition on the reconditioning or treatment of neurologic injuries, conditions and disease. In its current form, NYPTA is opposed to the legislation and has communicated that opposition.

State Budget Enacted

Governor Cuomo and the New York State Legislature finalized the State Budget before the April 1 deadline. As we had hoped, the final budget eliminated all of the problematic early intervention proposals. It did include a provider rate cut for providers of services to individuals with developmental disabilities. After a two week break, the Legislature reconvened on April 15th to begin the second phase of the legislative session where the bulk of activity occurs on non-related budget legislation.

I look forward to seeing you in Albany on April 30th.
All the Best!

Mike Mattia, PT DPT MS MHA
Chair, Advisory Panel on Legislation
NYPTA
 

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