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Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Writes in Support of RT Legislation

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May 3, 2011

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (CFF) has just sent a letter to members of Congress asking them to support the Medicare Respiratory Therapy Initiative, legislation spearheaded by the AARC to allow certain qualified RRTs to provide services under Part B Medicare.

The change in the law would allow these therapists to work under the general supervision of a physician, opening the door to wider use of RTs in physician offices and clinics.

The CFF notes that respiratory therapists play a crucial role in the care of people with cystic fibrosis and that changes in the delivery of health care services since the Medicare statute was written make it possible for many of these services to be provided outside of the acute care hospital.

“Services that once could only be provided in an acute hospital setting are now being delivered in alternate care sites,” write CFF President and CEO Robert J. Beall, PhD, and Vice President, Government Affairs Mary Dwight. “Not only would this legislation expand patient access to respiratory therapists, it would also provide parity for respiratory therapists in regards to their other professional colleagues.”

AARC members are urged to contact their local chapters of the CFF and other patient advocacy organizations and ask them to write in support of the legislation as well. You can find a list of local CFF chapters online.

The Medicare Respiratory Therapy Initiative is currently pending in the House of Representatives as HR 941.