After years of work and countless hours fighting to validate the role of orthotists and prosthetists as true medical professionals, AOPA has finally secured legislative language that recognizes documentation created by orthotists and prosthestists as part of the medical record for purposes of determining medical necessity. On February 9, 2018, President Trump signed a spending bill passed in both the House and the Senate that contained the following clause.
SEC. 50402. ORTHOTIST’S AND PROSTHETIST’S CLINICAL NOTES AS PART OF THE PATIENT’S MEDICAL RECORD.
13 Section 1834(h) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395m(h)) is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:”
(5) DOCUMENTATION CREATED BY ORTHOTISTS AND PROSTHETISTS. – For purposes of determining the reasonableness and medical necessity of orthotics and prosthetics, documentation created by an orthotist or prosthetist shall be considered part of the individual’s medical record to support documentation created by eligible professionals described in section 1848(k)(3)(B).”.
This addition to section 1834(h) of the Social Security Act finally acknowledges that clinical documentation created by orthotists and prosthetists does have value when determining the medical necessity of services they provide. This has been a legislative goal of AOPA for many years and we are excited that O&P professionals will finally receive the long awaited recognition as medical health professionals that they deserve.
While there is much work still to be done to translate this newly enacted law into real world practice, the passage of this legislation is a major step in the process. AOPA will continue to work diligently to ensure that our members are treated with the respect and recognition that they have earned while providing the highest level of clinical care to their patients. As this legislative change moves through the regulatory process and eventual implementation, AOPA will be there to make sure that role of the orthotist and prosthetist as an integral part of the rehabilitation team continues to be recognized and valued.
The complete announcement regarding this important legislative victory may be found on the AOPA website by clicking on the following link.
AOPA’s Take. Where You Go……..When You Need to Know!!!