July 16, 2021

CRT Advocates and Friends,

Yesterday the California Legislature passed Assembly Bill 133 (AB-133) which brings major enhancements to the Medi-Cal program and includes language to improve and protect access to Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) for people with disabilities.

The CRT provision has two components: (a) it permanently exempts CRT from a long-standing Medi-Cal provider cut of 10% and (b) it strengthens policies regarding the evaluation and delivery of CRT. AB-133 will now go to Gov. Gavin Newsom for signing. This is the eighth state to pass CRT focused legislation.

“We are extremely thankful to the California Legislature for passing this important CRT provision. Their action will help children and adults with disabilities receive the individually-configured CRT and supporting services they depend on.” said Don Clayback, Executive Director of NCART. He continued, “We thank Senator Dodd for his leadership and for championing this legislation on behalf of Californians with complex medical needs.”

Sen. Bill Dodd said, “We must do all we can to ensure people with disabilities get the specialized equipment they need that allows them to live their lives to the fullest.” He continued, “Also, we must ensure this vulnerable population has access to a network of qualified providers. With passage of the health trailer bill, we are doing that, achieving a level of dignity people deserve. I thank my colleagues for seeing the value in the proposal.”

"The complex wheelchairs and other adaptive equipment impacted by this legislation are critical to the health and independence of people with spinal cord injuries and other disabilities,” said Rick Hayden, Executive Director of Spinal Network, and long-time CRT advocate. “The improved safeguards and funding will have positive impacts on people's ability to get the proper technology and access the needed supporting services. Thanks to Sen. Dodd and his colleagues in the Legislature for taking this important action.”

NCART and its members worked closely with Senator Dodd and his staff to educate California legislators and policy makers on the need for these improvements. Other supporters included the California Association of Medical Product Suppliers, California Children’s Hospital Association, Children’s Specialty Care Coalition, Disability Rights California, Advanced Medical Technology Association, Spinal Care Network, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Care to You Health, and AdvaMed. 

Click here to download the official press release from NCART.