Congressional Briefing: June 27, 2017

The Independence Through Enhancement of Medicare and Medicaid (ITEM), the Coalition to Preserve Rehabilitation (CPR), and the Habilitation Benefits Coalition (HAB) held a Congressional Briefing on The Value of Rehabilitation and Habilitation Services and Devices in America’s Healthcare System.

What: Congressional Briefing on the Value of Rehabilitation and Habilitation

When: Tuesday, June 27, 2017 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Where: Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room SD-106

Speakers and Video

  • Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)
    • For a highlight of her speech, click here.
  • Representative Glenn Thompson (R-PA)
    • For a highlight of his speech, click here.
  • Eric LeGrand, former Rutgers football star with spinal cord injury
    • For a highlight of his speech, click here.
  • Roseann Sdoia, Boston Marathon bombing survivor
    • For a highlight of her speech, click here.
  • Lisa Smith, mother of child with developmental disability who uses habilitation therapy
    • For a highlight of her speech, click here.
  • Gregory J. O’Shanick, MD, President and Medical Director, Center for Neurorehabilitation Service
    • For a highlight of his speech, click here.
  • Peter Thomas, Principal, Powers Law, and Coordinator of the CPR, HAB and ITEM Coalitions
    • For a highlight of his speech, click here.

To view the entire one-hour briefing, click here.

Briefing Contents

  • The impact of rehabilitation and habilitation services and therapies
  • The impact of prosthetics, orthotics, durable medical equipment, and other assistive devices
  • Rehabilitation’s impact on injured military personnel and veterans
  • Personal testimonials of injury, habilitation, rehabilitation, and recovery

Demonstrations of Assistive Devices and Technologies

  • Informal demonstrations of cutting-edge assistive devices and technologies, including:
    • Otto Bock’s BeBionic prosthetic arm;
    • Ossur’s POWER Knee;
    • Complex rehab technology (CRT) wheelchairs;
    • The EksoGT™ wearable exoskeleton to assist those with spinal cord injury and stroke;
    • A cochlear implant to address hearing loss; and
    • A speech generation device (SGD).

To see the press release, click here.

To see ITEM’s one pager, click here.

Sponsoring Organizations

American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

American Association on Health and Disability

American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine

American Medical Rehabilitation Providers Association

American Music Therapy Association

American Occupational Therapy Association

American Physical Therapy Association

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

American Therapeutic Recreation Association

Amputee Coalition

The Arc of the United States


Brain Injury Association of America

Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation

National Association for the Advancement of Orthotics and Prosthetics

National Coalition for Assistive and Rehab Technology

National Multiple Sclerosis Society

United Spinal Association

Endorsing Organizations

Academy of Spinal Cord Injury Professionals

American Academy of Neurology

American Association of People with Disabilities

American Cochlear Implant Alliance

American Foundation for the Blind

American Heart Association / American Stroke Association

American Network of Community Options and Resources

American Spinal Injury Association

Assistive Technology Industry Association

Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired

Association of Academic Physiatrists

Association of Assistive Technology Act Programs

Association of Rehabilitation Nurses

Association of University Centers on Disabilities

Autism Speaks

Caregiver Action Network

Center for Medicare Advocacy

Clinician Task Force

Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund


Falling Forward Foundation

Family Voices

Hearing Loss Association of America

The Institute for Matching Person & Technology

Lakeshore Foundation

The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis

The Myositis Association

National Association for the Advancement of Orthotics and Prosthetics

National Association of County Behavioral Health and Developmental Disability Directors

National Association for Rural Mental Health

National Association of Social Workers

National Association of State Head Injury Administrators

National Council on Independent Living

National Disability Rights Network

National Rehabilitation Association

Paralyzed Veterans of America

Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America

The Simon Foundation for Continence

Spina Bifida Association


Uniform Data System for Medical Rehabilitation

Unite 2 Fight Paralysis

United Cerebral Palsy