NCART Members and Friends,

Last week was a great week for CRT. The NCART/NRRTS National CRT Leadership and Advocacy Conference in Washington, DC set records in attendance and Congressional visits. The CRT identity and message are growing!

The Conference brought 200 dedicated CRT stakeholders together in one place for education, networking, and advocacy. Attendees included providers, manufacturers, consumers, and clinicians. This enabled all CRT voices to be represented.

Attendance for the three-day event was up almost 20% from last year which was very encouraging and much appreciated.

The Leadership Day provided a forum for excellent business speakers and dialogue. Topics included: the direction and needs of the industry, using social media, the augmentative communication market, the home accessibility business, handling audits and appeals, managing a repair center, and the details of running a seating clinic. It finished with an old-fashion Town Hall Meeting.

The Advocacy Day featured a variety of "outside the industry" speakers sharing information on: national healthcare policy trends impacting CRT, the latest legislative and regulatory matters, state funding sources, and Medicaid advocacy activities. All topics were CRT-focused and the information was current and useful. We ended with a Congressional orientation and review for the next day.

The Capitol Hill Day was all about gaining co-sponsors for our CRT legislation (HR-942/S-948). The day included 245 visits to Congressional offices...another record! The teams making these visits included 25 people who use wheelchairs. They were able to deliver their personal message directly to Congress. They did a great job!

Initial responses from many of the Hill visits were very positive. There were several Senators and Representatives that committed to signing on as co-sponsor during the visit! Attendees will be following up on their visits over the next week or two to answer any questions and secure that co-sponsorship.

Special thanks to the organizations and individuals who participated in the National CRT Congressional Call-In Day on April 29th. Your calls helped lay the groundwork for many of the Congressional conversations and reinforced the support for CRT legislation.

Finally, thanks to the Conference Sponsors who made this possible. And to all the attendees, especially the consumer attendees, who traveled great distances to carry the CRT message to their Members of Congress. The commitment and participation from everyone was amazing and that's what provided such a solid foundation for the whole Conference.

If you weren't able to be with us this year, we want to see you next year!

We'll be sharing more details in the weeks ahead and will be announcing new co-sponsors as they become official. We have some great CRT momentum to build on!

- Don

Donald E. Clayback
Executive Director NCART
716-839-9728 (office) | 716-913-4754 (cell)
[email protected] |

Release Date: 06-May-2014