The American Medical Rehabilitation Providers Association Spent 550,000 USD in Lobbying in 2022
Author Erin Gerhart
The American Medical Rehabilitation Providers Association (AMRPA) is lobbying on behalf of several bills, primarily centered on the medical field and its practices. AMRPA’s stated mission is to advance the field of medical rehabilitation through advocacy, education, and the promotion of access to care. The organization represents inpatient hospital units, hospital outpatient departments, and non-hospital associated settings like comprehensive rehabilitation and nursing facilities. The organization is run out of Washington, D.C. and the current Board Chair is Anthony Cuzzola. Katherine Abramson is the current Executive Vice President of Government Relations and Policy Development at AMRPA and has been with the company since 2019.
The AMRPA works to advocate certain COVID-19 waivers be made permanent and that preparations be made for future pandemic preparedness.
Some of the specific bills being lobbied are H.R. 3173 Improving Seniors Timely Access to Care Act (ISTAC), S. 996 the Impact Act, and H.R. 2455 the TRIA Act. ISTAC recently passed the House of Representatives in September of this year and establishes several standards under the Medicare Advantage plan for prior authorizations. One example is the requirement that Medicare Advantage plans must establish an electronic prior authorization program which includes the ability to provide and convey real-time decisions and their responses. S. 996, also known as the Improving Minority Participation and Careers in Telecommunications Act, establishes a grant program to assist higher learning institutions that prepare minority students for the telecommunication fields. Qualifying institutions would be historical black colleges and universities, tribal colleges or universities, and minority-serving institutions.
Finally, the TRIA Act would require certain data collection and recommendations for Medicare post-acute care prospective payment systems to incorporate the impact of COVID-19 on patients and providers alike. Functionally, this bill would reset the Impact Act of 2021, and lead to the development of a prototype for post-acute care providers in public health emergencies.
The Emerging Field of Rehabilitation
Written accounts of physical rehabilitation can first be traced back to 400 BCE wherein water, heat, cold, light, and exercise were used to treat injuries and illness. Physiotherapy first emerged en-masse during World War I, when physicians worked in reconstruction hospitals to rehabilitate injuried and disabled soldiers. The field of physiatry emerged in the early 1920s, with the first formal education stemming from Doctor John Coulter who became the first full-time academic physician in physical medicine. U.S. involvement in World War II broadened the focus of physical medicine to become more comprehensive and focused on restoring injured patient’s capabilities as they returned home from combat. In 1945 the American Medical Association established a section on physical medicine and rehabilitation, and in 1947 the Advisory Board of Medical Specialities formally recognized the American Board of Physical Medicine.