WVOTA News

Our WVOTA Legislative Day will be Tuesday, February 12, 2019 at the State Capitol in Charleston.

Contact Mary Hagar at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Sarah Black at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by January 1, 2019 if you plan on coming. 

They will coordinate legislative appointments with your representatives and arrange table space as needed the Capitol Rotunda.

This morning the President signed into law a permanent repeal of the cap on Medicare outpatient therapy services. After 20 years of looming threat, the therapy cap will never again put beneficiaries at risk for being denied essential occupational therapy services.

Many of you have seen firsthand the devastating effects that a cap on occupational therapy services can have on the clients we serve. Like some of you, I lost my job when the cap first took effect in 1999. Today, because of you, this policy is no more! Over the years, you have written hundreds of thousands of letters to tell Congress to stop the cap. You have placed thousands of phone calls to tell Congress why occupational therapy is essential for our clients.

wvota award pictureDelegate Barbara Evans Fleischauer and Delegate Amy Summers both received awards this past weekend from the WV Occupational Therapy Association. Delegate Fleischauer, D-Monongalia is a former Vice Chair of the House Health and Human Resources Committee. Delegate Summers, R-Taylor, is the current Vice Chair.

The WV Occupational Therapy Association (WVOTA) held its annual meeting at the Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center in Morgantown on Saturday, October 13, 2018. The organization awarded its “Spirit of the WVOTA Award” to the two delegates because of their work on Senate Bill 273, which relates to reducing the problems of opiate abuse in West Virginia. The Delegates made sure that occupational therapists were among the health professionals who are licensed and compensated to provide care for patients with opioid addiction.

backpack

WVOTA joined AOTA and occupational therapy practitioners, educators, and students across the country as we help others Live Life To Its Fullest by avoiding the pain and injury that can come from heavy backpacks and bags. Students, parents, educators, school administrators, and community members will learn safety tips to stay protected from back pain throughout life. You have the chance to help by organizing local events and educating people of all ages about proper bag usage. Teach others how to properly choose, pack, lift, and carry various types of bags—including backpacks, purses, briefcases, and suitcases. 

We typically celebrate AOTA’s National School Backpack Awareness Day annually on the third Wednesday of each September. This year's event will officially take place on Wednesday, September 18, 2019.

The OTD mandate, announced by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE)  in August of 2017 continues to be a serious point of discussion within the profession.  Late Friday, the AOTA Board of Directors passed a motion to put the mandate into abeyance (hit the pause button) until the Representative Assembly can address member concerns.  This follows ACOTE reaffirming their intention to move to the OTD as the  entry level degree for occupational therapists and to maintain two points of entry (Bachelors and Associate) for occupational therapy assistants. 

I'd like to thank Sarah Merritt for her contribution to the state and the association. Sarah has decided to step down from the position of Vice Presideint of WVOTA at this time but will remain an active member, contritbuting in new ways. And, we'll all see Sarah at confernce this fall!

When an office is vacated prior to the term's end, the executive committee will appoint a replacement to serve the remainder of the term (in this case, 1 year).  If you are interested in being considered or would like more information, please let me know (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).  

WVOTA is working on some very exciting initiatives and the new VP will have the opportunity to contribute to the state and the profession at a time when we are poised to make a big impact!  

PLAN TO ATTEND IN THE FALL!

The WVOTA Annual Conference

This 2-day Fall conference is your up-close and personal opportunity to learn how WVOTA and AOTA are working to safeguard and advance your OT practice! Earn contact hours, network, and gain free $ towards NBCOT. Food and drinks provided!

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