NV Congressional Support of Disability Bills in the 115 Congress

115th Congress (2017-2018)

 

H.R.5004 – & S 1318 Air Carrier Access Amendments Act of 2018

No Nv Sponsors on Hr5004
No NV Sponsor on S1318

Introduced in House (02/13/2018)

Air Carrier Access Amendments Act of 2018

This bill expands provisions prohibiting discrimination against disabled individuals by an air carrier. Specifically, it enumerates certain actions that an air carrier must take or may not take with respect to a disabled individual. It also requires the Department of Transportation (DOT) to ensure that disabled individuals traveling in air transportation are able to file complaints with DOT in response to disability-related discrimination and receive assistance from DOT through a hotline or comparable electronic means.
The bill authorizes an aggrieved individual and the Department of Justice to bring a civil action for discrimination. The civil penalty for damage for discrimination involving damage to a wheelchair or other mobility aid of a disabled passenger may be increased up to three times the maximum penalty otherwise allowed.
The Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board shall prescribe regulations for aircraft with new or existing type certificates to ensure the accessibility of individuals with disabilities. The board shall: (1) conduct a study to determine the ways in which individuals with significant disabilities who use wheelchairs can be accommodated through in-cabin wheelchair restraint systems, and (2) issue minimum guidelines for such systems.
DOT shall: (1) prescribe or revise regulations to ensure that individuals with disabilities who request assistance receive timely and effective assistance at airports and on aircraft from trained personnel, (2) develop an Airline Passengers with Disabilities Bill of Rights, and (3) establish an advisory committee for air travel needs of passengers with disabilities.

Disability Integration Act of 2017

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (05/16/2017)

This bill prohibits states or local governments that provide institutional placements for individuals with disabilities who need long-term assistance with daily living activities or health-related tasks, and prohibits insurance providers that fund such long-term services, from denying community-based services that would enable such individuals to live in the community and lead an independent life.
States, local governments, or insurance providers may not discriminate against such individuals in the provision of community-based services by: (1) imposing prohibited eligibility criteria, cost caps, waiting lists, or payment structures; (2) failing to provide a specific community-based service; or (3) requiring an individual to receive a service in a congregate or disability-specific setting.
Community-based services must be offered to individuals with such disabilities prior to institutionalization. Institutionalized individuals must be notified regularly of community-based alternatives.
States, local governments, and public insurance providers must assess: (1) transportation barriers that prevent individuals from receiving services in integrated settings, and (2) the availability of integrated employment opportunities.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) must issue regulations requiring states, local governments, or insurance providers to offer community-based long-term services to individuals with such disabilities who would otherwise qualify for institutional placement. State and local governments, in conjunction with housing agencies, must ensure sufficient availability of affordable, accessible, and integrated housing that is not a disability-specific residential setting or a setting where services are tied to tenancy.
Such regulations must also require states and local governments to begin implementing a transition plan to achieve the requirements of this bill within 12 years after its enactment. For 10 years after issuance of the regulations, HHS must determine annually whether each state is complying with the transition plan. If a state is complying, HHS must increase by five percentage points the federal medical assistance percentage for a state requesting an increase for expenditures on home and community-based services furnished under the state Medicaid plan under title XIX (Medicaid) of the Social Security Act, or a waiver of such plan, that are identified as: (1) improvements to ensure accessibility or self-directed receipt of such services, (2) funding shifts from institutional settings to integrated community-based services, or (3) environmental modifications for housing targeted toward the lowest income individuals.
The bill provides for DOJ enforcement and allows civil actions by individuals subjected to, or about to be subjected to, a violation of this bill.
No Nv Sponsors on Hr5004
No NV Sponsor on S1318

H.R.3730 – To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide for the non-application of Medicare competitive acquisition rates to complex rehabilitative manual wheelchairs and accessories

This bill is to help providers of Wheelchair and accessories for specialized wheelchairs to not be applied to terrible competitive bidding rates. We have a huge access problem in Nevada and people are not getting their products fixed or serviced because ot these medicare policy changes.

Introduced in House (09/11/2017)

This bill amends title XVIII (Medicare) of the Social Security Act to prohibit the application of Medicare competitive acquisition rates to complex, rehabilitative, manual wheelchairs and accessories. (A competitive bidding program has replaced the use of established fee schedule amounts to determine payments under Medicare for certain durable medical equipment such as wheelchairs.)
Cosponsor Date Cosponsored
Rep. Amodei, Mark E. [R-NV-2]* 09/11/2017
Rep. Titus, Dina [D-NV-1] 10/12/2017
Rep. Kihuen, Ruben J. [D-NV-4] 11/28/2017

 

 

Oppose HR 620

To amend the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 to promote compliance through education, to clarify the requirements for demand letters, to provide for a notice and cure period before the commencement of a private civil action, and for other purposes.

Cosponsor Date Cosponsored
Rep. Amodei, Mark E. [R-NV-2] 10/04/2017

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (02/15/2018)

 

ADA Education and Reform Act of 2017

(Sec. 2) This bill requires the Disability Rights Section of the Department of Justice to develop a program to educate state and local governments and property owners on strategies for promoting access to public accommodations for persons with a disability. The program may include training for professionals to provide a guidance of remediation for potential violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

(Sec. 3) The bill prohibits civil actions based on the failure to remove an architectural barrier to access into an existing public accommodation unless: (1) the aggrieved person has provided to the owners or operators a written notice specific enough to identify the barrier, and (2) the owners or operators fail to provide the person with a written description outlining improvements that will be made to improve the barrier or they fail to remove the barrier or make substantial progress after providing such a description. The aggrieved person’s notice must specify the circumstances under which public accommodation access was denied.

(Sec. 5) The Judicial Conference of the United States must develop a model program to promote alternative dispute resolution mechanisms to resolve such claims. The model program should include an expedited method for determining relevant facts related to such barriers and steps to resolve accessibility issues before litigation.

 

H.R.5306 – EMPOWER Care Act  & S. 2227

To reauthorize the Money Follows the Person Demonstration Program.

No NV sponsors

 H.R.2372 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)   S 2372

Passed House amended (06/15/2017)

(This measure has not been amended since it was reported to the House on June 2, 2017. The summary of that version is repeated here.)

Veterans Equal Treatment Ensures Relief and Access Now Act or the VETERAN Act

(Sec. 2) This bill amends the Internal Revenue Code to specify that, for the purpose of determining eligibility for the premium assistance tax credit, an individual may not be treated as eligible for coverage under certain Department of Veterans Affairs health insurance programs unless the individual is enrolled in the program.

The bill applies to the premium assistance credit under current law for tax years ending after 2013 and, if the American Health Care Act of 2017 is enacted, the modified premium assistance credit that would take effect under that bill after 2019.

(Under current law, the premium assistance tax credit is a refundable tax credit provided to eligible individuals and families to subsidize the purchase of health insurance plans through an exchange established under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Individuals eligible for minimum essential health coverage from certain sources other than the individual insurance market are not eligible for the credit.)

VA MISSION Act of 2018

HR 5674 & S. 2372

Cosponsors: H.R.5674 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)  No NV sponsors

S 2372 Senator Dean Heller Supports

Cosponsor Date Cosponsored
Sen. Heller, Dean [R-NV]* 02/05/2018

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (05/03/2018)
VA Maintaining Internal Systems and Strengthening Integrated Outside Networks Act of 2018 or VA MISSION Act of 2018

This bill consolidates Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) community care programs, revises other VA health care programs and facilities provisions, and makes appropriations for veterans care.

The bill establishes the Veterans Community Care Program to furnish hospital care, medical services, and extended care services through certain non-VA providers to veterans who are enrolled in the VA health care system or otherwise entitled to VA care.

The VA may enter agreements with non-VA providers to furnish veterans with care that is otherwise not feasibly available.

The VA shall: (1) establish standards for VA health care quality and for non-VA care in areas of VA expertise, (2) prohibit rehiring previously-removed VA providers, (3) provide prompt payment to providers, (4) establish opioid prescribing practices for non-VA providers, and (5) carry out the modernization or realignment of Veterans Health Administration facilities.

The Veterans Choice Program is terminated after one year.

The bill establishes: (1) the Center for Innovation for Care and Payment, and (2) the Asset and Infrastructure Review Commission.

The VA may: (1) provide care for the live donor of a transplant for a veteran, and (2) carry out a Specialty Education Loan Repayment Program and other actions to recruit health care professionals.

The VA family caregiver program is expanded.

The Office of Management and Budget shall review each enhanced-use facility lease.

The bill establishes pilot programs for medical scribes, mobile deployment teams for underserved facilities, and graduate medical education.

The bill extends VA pension reductions for Medicare-covered veterans in nursing homes.

H.R.2472 & S 910 – Disability Integration Act of 2017115th Congress (2017-2018)

No NV sponsors on either Bill

Introduced in House (05/16/2017)

Disability Integration Act of 2017

This bill prohibits states or local governments that provide institutional placements for individuals with disabilities who need long-term assistance with daily living activities or health-related tasks, and prohibits insurance providers that fund such long-term services, from denying community-based services that would enable such individuals to live in the community and lead an independent life.

States, local governments, or insurance providers may not discriminate against such individuals in the provision of community-based services by: (1) imposing prohibited eligibility criteria, cost caps, waiting lists, or payment structures; (2) failing to provide a specific community-based service; or (3) requiring an individual to receive a service in a congregate or disability-specific setting.

Community-based services must be offered to individuals with such disabilities prior to institutionalization. Institutionalized individuals must be notified regularly of community-based alternatives.

States, local governments, and public insurance providers must assess: (1) transportation barriers that prevent individuals from receiving services in integrated settings, and (2) the availability of integrated employment opportunities

No NV Sponsors

Don’t ban the plastic straw

Don’t ban the plastic straw

There has been much hype in recent days about the plastic drinking straw. Many organisations, hospitality venues, exhibition centres and local government organisations are jumping on the popularist bandwagon and banning or removing single-use plastic straws. The city of Seattle has gone one stage further and introduced a fine for any establishment providing a straw to a customer.

The trouble with this type of reaction and action is that it is knee-jerk and based on the popularist ideology that concern for the environment trumps everything. Further, there is a perception that concern for the environment is a vote or customer winner.

But like all rash knee-jerk reactions, decisions based on popularist ideology are seldom thought through and environmental pushes have a history of marginalising people with a disability.

Plastic straws are not a luxury for some they are a necessity

Many people with a disability lack the hand or arm dexterity to drink conventionally from a glass, cup, mug or bottle. The straw is an essential tool for everyday participation in life, whether that is daily living, social engagement, travelling or work environments. The basic bendable straw has been a major technological breakthrough and enabler for those reliant on them. Independence is something that every human being has a right to and it is not something that should not be taken away by decisions around a board table looking to score CSR brownie points or politicians looking to shore up the “green” vote. Let’s remember that people with a disability are now the largest minority group in the world and with an ageing population now have considerable voting clout. Further, people with a disability are on track to control 50% of the tourism and leisure spend by 2020, a sobering consideration for those organisations in hospitality and tourism banning straws.

When you consider all of the environmental issues in the world and climate change is the humble plastic straw the “thing” you really want to hang your environmental credentials on?

 

What about the alternatives
  • Paper straws breakdown in hot liquids
  • Paper straws also breakdown over a period
  • Glass straws can break with involuntary jaw movements causing injury
  • Metal straws can break teeth with involuntary jaw movements
  • Bamboo straws can’t bend and are difficult to clean
  • Bamboo straws can also break teeth
  • Bio-degradable straws breakdown in temperatures over 40 degree celsius
  • Carrying your own straw is often impracticable and unhygienic

In short, there are currently no practical alternatives to the single-use plastic bendable straw.

By all means, stop issuing straws to all and sundry, but have them available to those that require them to participate equally in social life or work environments. It is not only the socially the right thing to do, but in many parts of the world, it is a requirement under various disability discrimination acts including the US ADA and Australia’s DDA. Further, for those countries that have ratified the UNCRPD, local governments would find it very difficult to justify bans under that convention.

Need more convincing?

There has been some excellent editorial commentary over the last few days. Here are some samples:

Action on plastics shouldn’t make life suck for disabled people – Greenpeace

For many with disabilities, plastic straws are essential – not frivolous – The Globe and Mail

THE ABLEIST FIGHT OVER PLASTIC STRAWS – bitch media

There’s an unexpected downfall to banning plastic straws. Here’s what to consider. – Upworthy

RevUp Nevada Issues

1) Working to educate state policymakers
2) Educating people with disabilities, family members, advocates and the general public on issues affecting people with disabilities

3) Health Care
a) Access to appropriate medical services in a managed care environment
b) Physical accessibility to medical services
c) Access to specialists to meet specific needs of people with disabilities
d) Addressing discrimination to services because of a preexisting medical condition
e) Medicaid Expansion

4) Long Term Services and Supports
a) Getting and keeping folks out of nursing facilities and other institutions
b) Making managed care work for people with disabilities
c) Elimination of all waiting lists for people with disabilities and older Texans
d) Increasing the number of community attendants and to assure they get paid an
adequate wage and benefits

5) Rights
a) Educate people with disabilities of all ages on their rights under disability rights laws like
ADA, Fair Housing Act, IDEA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
b) Conduct trainings on strategies to implement disability rights laws

6) Employment
a) Identify strategies to decrease high unemployment rate of people with disabilities
b) Educate consumers on Work Incentives/Disincentives

7) Housing – Accessible, Affordable, Integrated
a) Educate consumers on their rights under housing rights laws
b) Identify accessible, affordable integrated housing options
www.aapd.com/REVUP
c) Work with Relocation Specialists to identify housing options for people coming out of nursing facilities and other institutions

8) Transportation – Accessible, Integrated
a) Mainline Ridership Incentives and Training
b) Paratransit – What Is Its Role?
c) Accessible Taxicabs & Ridesharing
d) Air Travel

9) Education
a) Training on IDEA – Implementation/Enforcement
b) Assure students with disabilities get an adequate Transition Plan before they leave high
schools

10) Leadership Development
a) Training on development of new leaders
b) Training on use of Social Media
c) Development of Grassroots Organizations

Protect CRT and Your Independence for Equipment

Since 2015, a variety of national organizations have been working with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and Congress to stop CMS from inappropriately using Medicare Competitive Bid Program (CBP) pricing to cut payment amounts for accessories used with Complex Rehab wheelchairs. CMS published a policy clarification stating it would not use
CBP pricing for accessories used with Complex Rehab power wheelchairs, but unfortunately did not extend relief to accessories used with Complex Rehab manual wheelchairs.

Congressional action is needed! Legislation has been introduced- H.R. 3730- and we need people from across the country to reach out to their Members of Congress to ask for support and passage of the bill. Go to www.protectmymobility.org and send the prepared emails asking for support of the legislation.

National Disability Call-In Day to Save Medicaid

Join people with disabilities, families, and advocates around the country as we make sure our senators phones are ringing off the hook with opposition to the Graham-Cassidy bill.

Call the Senate switchboard at: 202-224-3121

Use this sample script and talking points:
http://bit.ly/2u1GKJz

Let them know that people with disabilities rely on Medicaid for the services that enable them to live and participate in the community. You oppose the Graham-Cassidy bill or any other bill that cuts, caps, or block grants Medicaid.

We’ll continue to add resources over the next few days.

How to Call Your Elected Officials
https://autisticadvocacy.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/fact-sheet-how-to-call-your-elected-officials.pdf (plain language)
https://autisticadvocacy.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Easy-Read-They-Work-For-Us-4-Making-a-Phone-Call.pdf

ADA Reform Act Take Action

H.R. 620 the ADA Education and Reform Act has been scheduled to be marked up by the full House Committee on Judiciary on Thursday, September 7 at 10am.

Now is the time to act! We need your help in stopping this harmful bill. Please take action today!

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Send a note or call your Member of Congress – to take action now!

H.R. 620 Talking Points:

Undermines the landmark civil rights law, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and harms people with disabilities.
H.R. 620 does not strengthen the ADA, it severely weakens and undermines one of the goals of the law.

It upends a key provision of the ADA by preventing people with disabilities from immediately going to court to enforce their rights.
A “time period fix” does in fact harm people with disabilities, meaning that people with disabilities will not be able to gain physical access to any place of public accommodation for weeks, months, or possibly years.
H.R. 620 REMOVES ANY INCENTIVE for businesses to comply proactively with the ADA.

Let me know if you have any questions. With your help, we can make a difference.

Dina Titus:
Washington, D.C.
2464 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 202-225-5965

District
550 East Charleston Boulevard
Suite B
Las Vegas, NV 89104
Phone: 702-220-9823
@RepDinaTitus twitter

Mark Amodei
Washington, D.C. Office
332 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-6155

Fax: (202) 225-5679
Chief of Staff — Bruce Miller
Communications Director — Logan Ramsey
Executive Assistant — Rachel Provost
Legislative Director — Stephanie Walker
Senior Advisor — Kyle Thomas
Senior Legislative Assistant — Lauren Currie
Legislative Assistant — Ken Brooke

Reno Office
5310 Kietzke Lane, Suite 103
Reno, NV 89511
Phone: (775) 686-5760
Fax: (775) 686-5711
District Director — Stacy Parobek
Constituent Service Representative — Arturo Garzon
Constituent Service Representative — Tracy Soliday
Constituent Service Representative — Robert Gastonguay
Constituent Service Representative – Amanda Brazeau

Elko Office
905 Railroad Street, Suite 104 D
Elko, NV 89801
Phone: (775) 777-7705
Fax: (775) 753-9984
Rural Representative — Martin Paris
twitter @MarkAmodeiNV2

Jacky Rosen
@repjackyrosen
District Offices
Las Vegas Office
8872 S Eastern Ave, Ste 220
Las Vegas, NV 89123
Phone: 702-963-9500

Washington, DC Office
413 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 202-225-3252

Rep. Ruben Kihuen
Representative from Nevada’s 4th District, Democrat
@RepKihuen

Washington, DC Office
313 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-9894
Fax: (202) 225-9783

District Office
2250 N Las Vegas Blvd
Suite 500
North Las Vegas, NV 89030
Phone: (702) 963-9360
Fax: (844) 445-8944

CRT National Issue

Get Cosponsors for CRT Manual Wheelchair Accessories Bill

August 30, 2017

CRT Stakeholders and Friends,

We need your Nevada Representative to join in the introduction of new legislation to stop the Medicare cuts to CRT manual wheelchair accessories.  Nevada Representatives are always supportive to CRT.

As we reported earlier this month, Representatives Lee Zeldin (R-NY) and John Larson (D-CT) will be introducing NEW legislation in September to stop CMS’ application of Medicare Competitive Bid pricing to accessories used with CRT manual wheelchairs.

Representatives Zeldin and Larson are seeking additional House members to join them in the September introduction. You can see the list of members who have already agreed to be an original cosponsor here.

If your Representative is not on the list, please reach out and ask him/her to sign on by contacting either office. Use the Issue Paper available here to make your request.  The new legislation to be introduced can be found here.

What is Complex Rehab Technology

What is Complex Rehab Technology (CRT)?

CRT is any-part of the wheelchair that was made to fit the person’s unique needs from the base of the wheelchair up or frame.

Complex Rehab Technology Defined

 The Products

Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) products and associated services include medically necessary, individually configured devices that require evaluation, configuration, fitting, adjustment or programming. These products and services are designed to meet the specific and unique medical,

physical, and functional needs of an individual with a primary diagnosis resulting from a congenital disorder, progressive or degenerative neuromuscular disease, or from certain types of injury or trauma. For purposes of this document, CRT refers to individually configured manual wheelchair systems, power wheelchair systems, adaptive seating systems, alternative positioning systems and other mobility devices.

The Person

These products and services are designed to meet the specific and unique medical and functional needs of an individual with a primary diagnosis resulting from a congenital disorder, progressive or degenerative neuromuscular disease, or from certain types of injury or trauma. The primary diagnoses that can require CRT include:

  • Spinal Cord Injury; or
  • Anterior horn cell diseases; or
  • Traumatic Brain Injury; or
  • Post‐Polio Syndrome; or
  • Cerebral Palsy; or
  • Cerebellar degeneration; or
  • Muscular Dystrophy; or
  • Dystonia; or
  • Spina Bifida; or
  • Huntington’s disease; or
  • Osteogenesis Imperfecta; or
  • Spinocerebellar disease; or
  • Arthrogryposis; or
  • Certain types of amputation; or
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis; or
  • Paralysis or paresis; or
  • Multiple Sclerosis; or
  • Demyelinating diseases; or
  • Myelopathy; or
  • Myopathy; or
  • Progressive Muscular Atrophy; or
  • Other disability or disease that is determined through individual consideration to require the use of such individually configured products and services

The Process

In establishing a person’s need for CRT products and services, consideration is always given to the person’s immediate and anticipated medical and functional needs. These needs include, but are not limited to, activities of daily living (ADLs), instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs), functional mobility, positioning, pressure redistribution, and communication. CRT is used to address these needs and enable the individual to accomplish these tasks safely, timely, and as independently as possible in all environments the individual is expected to encounter.

The provision of CRT consists of two interrelated components:

  • The clinical component of providing CRT includes the physical and functional evaluation, treatment plan, goal setting, preliminary device feature determination, trials/simulations, fittings, function related training, determination of outcomes and related follow‐up. The clinical team is responsible for the prescription and supporting medical documentation.
  • The technology‐related component of providing CRT includes, as appropriate: accessibility survey of the home environment; transportation assessment; technology assessment; equipment demonstration/trial/simulation; product feature matching to identified medical, physical, and functional needs; system configuration; fitting; adjustments; programming; and product related training and follow‐up.

 The Professionals

The provision of CRT is done through an interdisciplinary team consisting of, at a minimum, a Physician, a Physical Therapist or Occupational Therapist, and a Rehab Technology Professional (referred to as the CRT Team). The team collectively provides clinical services and technology related services. An individual’s medical and functional needs are identified by the clinical team. These needs are then matched to products and configured into custom designed systems by the

Rehab Technology Professional with input from the clinical team.

  • The clinical CRT services are provided by a licensed/certified Physical Therapist or Occupational Therapist.
  • The technology‐related CRT services are provided by a certified, registered or otherwise credentialed Rehab Technology Professional.

 The Credentials

CRT products must be provided by individuals who are certified, registered or otherwise credentialed by recognized organizations in the field of CRT and who are employed by a business specifically accredited by a CMS deemed accreditation organization to provide CRT.

Source NARTS 2016