Users First's Jenn Wolf is in Washington, D.C., right now fighting for affordable, appropriate wheelchairs.

Users First’s Jenn Wolf is in Washington, D.C., right now fighting for affordable, appropriate wheelchairs.

This week is Complex Rehabilitation Technology Week. United Spinal along with other stakeholders at the NCART Conference are in Washington, D.C., promoting better access to customized wheelchairs.

You can participate by contacting your members of Congress and telling them the right wheelchair matters here. Once you click the link, just follow the steps and an email will be sent on your behalf. Jot down the name of your congressional reps so you can easily participate in our virtual call-in.

Next, join our virtual call-in by contacting the main Congressional switchboard by following these two easy steps:

1. Go to the linked pdf here and review the “Co-Sponsors By State” See if your senators and representative are already signed on. If they aren’t, proceed to Step 2.

2. If any of your members are not signed on, call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at 202/225-3121 and ask to be connected to their offices. When connected to your member’s office, tell them you are calling about “pending Medicare legislation” and ask to speak with the “health legislative assistant.”

Here is a suggested message:

“I am calling to ask Representative (House bill) __________ or Senator (Senate bill) __________) to sign on as a co-sponsor to House Bill H.R. 942 or Senate Bill S. 948) to establish a Separate Category for Complex Rehab Technology under the Medicare program. This bill protects access to specialized wheelchairs, seating systems, and other adaptive equipment used by a small population of people with significant disabilities such as spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy, ALS, and multiple sclerosis. It is gaining strong support in Congress and already has 108 Representatives and 11 Senators co-sponsors. The bill is also supported by over 50 national consumer and medical professional groups including United Spinal Association, the ALS Association, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the American Association for People with Disabilities, and Paralyzed Veterans of America.”

On May 1, United Spinal, along with clinicians and wheelchair providers, will be meeting with policymakers urging them to support “Ensuring Access to Quality Complex Rehabilitation Technology Act.” This is important work, and will be especially effective if the policymakers have heard about this issue from their constituents.