NCOTA Legislative Update 2/11/16

NCOTA Legislative Update 2/11/16

Feb 12, 2016

NCOTA Legislative Update 2/11/16 (see attached files at bottom of article)

Happy New Year to all of our OT/OTA friends and members of NCOTA! There are a couple of big legislative/policy items that NCOTA has been working on in the past few months that we’d like to call member’s attention to:

NC Medicaid Policy 10A Request For Comment

Medicaid providers are probably already aware that the Division of Medical Assistance (DMA) is proposing significant changes to Policy 10A for Outpatient Specialized Therapies. A copy of the full proposed policy can be found here, while a summary of the proposed changes from a group of therapy providers can be found, attached. The NCOTA is extremely concerned about many of the proposed policy changes (specifically new requirements for physician orders, plans of care, discontinuation of OT services, and definition of skilled service) and has submitted the attached response. We are also encouraging all providers and beneficiaries who would be adversely affected by this policy update to send their own comments to [email protected]. The deadline for submission is February 19th.

School-Based Salary Survey and Certification

In the past few months, the NCOTA has heard from school-based Occupational Therapists with concerns regarding salary and certification status. In response, we published a salary survey last year, seeking input from school-based staff to compare their experience/salary level with the current certified salary scale. Because of the efforts of our pediatric specialists, NCOTA members, and providers across the state, we had a huge response to our information request. Based on the survey, almost every respondent received a higher salary than what they would have received given the same experience level on the certified salary scale (download .pdf here). Thus, the NCOTA feels that pursuing certification for school-based staff would have a negative impact on the salaries of OT providers in this setting. However throughout this process and during the Pediatric Special Interest Group at the Fall Conference, we were able to identify examples of individual school-based providers and groups of providers who were able to advocate improved salaries with their LEAs. The NCOTA feels that we do have a meaningful role in helping OT practitioners in the schools advocate for themselves, their profession, and (most importantly) the students that they serve.

NCOTA Advocacy Day

Please make sure you are saving the date for our next Advocacy Day at the General Assembly in Raleigh. We would like for as many providers, members, students, caregivers and clients to join Ashley Perkinson and I in Raleigh on May 4th, 2016. This is your opportunity to make your OT voice heard with your local Representatives and Senators, who will be deciding on several key pieces of legislation that will be affecting the profession in 2016. We look forward to seeing you there!

R. Bradley Myers, MA, OTR/L

Clinical Specialist, Carolina Therapy Services

Legislative Chair, North Carolina Occupational Therapy Association


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