CRT Virtual Fly-In Draws Record Participation

The 2022 virtual Congressional Fly-In drew record numbers of participants, according to statistics provided by NCART and NRRTS, who operated the event.

In the debriefing at the end of the Sept. 14 day of Congressional and Senate visits, NCART Associate Director Mickae Lee said 292 offices (out of a total of 535 House and Senate offices) participated in Zoom visits with Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) advocates. That’s nearly a 25-percent increase in office visits vs. 2021 numbers.

Lee said approximately 300 advocates — 129 more than last year — participated, and 43 states were represented.

The ITEM Coalition held an in-person Congressional briefing on Capitol Hill to coincide with the virtual Fly-In. Lee said the briefing, attended by incoming NCART Executive Director Wayne Grau, drew approximately 70 attendees. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Rep. Dan Meuser (R-Pa.) were among the Members of Congress who attended the briefing.

During their meetings with Members of Congress, NCART and NRRTS asked CRT advocates to focus on the need for Medicare funding for power seat elevation and standing on complex power wheelchairs; the need for federal funding support for CRT suppliers, who’ve been battling rising business costs while receiving pre-pandemic levels of funding; and the benefits of making telehealth options permanent for CRT clinicians.

Registration for the Fly-In was free, thanks to the support of sponsors. Alliance Rehab and Medical Equipment, National Seating & Mobility, Numotion, Quantum Rehab, Reliable Medical, and Rifton signed on as Premier Sponsors. Permobil and U.S. Rehab were Partner Sponsors. Abilities Expo, Action Seating & Mobility, Altimate Medical, ATLAS Technology, Invacare Corp., Merits, MK Battery, Motion Composites, Ride Designs, Sunrise Medical, and the University of Michigan Health participated as Supporter Sponsors.

In the debriefing after Congressional visits were done for the day, a consumer participant said the free registration was particularly welcome during a time of rising living expenses.

About the Author

Laurie Watanabe is the editor of Mobility Management. She can be reached at lwatanabe@1105media.com.

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