Hill Day 2018: Respiratory Therapists Speak their Mind on Capitol Hill

 Published: April 25, 2018

By: Heather Willden


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For Hill Day 2018, respiratory therapists, appointed as Political Advocacy Contact Team members by their states, will head to Washington, D.C. on May 1 to lobby their Congressional delegations seeking support for a Telehealth Pilot focusing solely on respiratory therapists.

“We want all patients to receive the best possible respiratory care, wherever they reside,” said AARC President Brian K. Walsh, PhD, RRT, FAARC. “And for some patients, physically getting to the clinic is not an option. We want to ensure respiratory therapists are included in telehealth services in order to meet the needs of all patients. The Telehealth Pilot is an important step in making this possible.”

This important initiative, when passed by Congress, will evaluate both the health impact and costs associated with respiratory therapists as telehealth practitioners. It will also help demonstrate the expertise respiratory therapists bring to the health care system and their patients.

To launch this important advocacy initiative, the AARC hosted a Virtual Lobby Campaign. AARC Members across the U.S. made phone calls and sent emails and social media messages to their elected officials, sharing their opinion on the value of respiratory care inclusion in telehealth services. Building on this virtual lobbying effort, more than 130 RTs will go to Washington for Hill Day on May 1 to meet with their Congressional delegations and continue seeking support.

“Your help can go a long way to making our efforts in Washington successful, and all interested individuals are urged to make their voice heard by sending emails, calling their elected officials, or even directly messaging them on social media,” said AARC Associate Executive Director for Advocacy and Government Affairs Anne Marie Hummel.

More information is available on the AARC Advocacy section of the website.

Email newsroom@aarc.org with questions or comments, we’d love to hear from you.

Heather Willden

Heather Willden is the Director of Governance and Strategic Initiatives for the AARC where she works with state affiliates as the HOD liaison. She also manages DEI efforts and strategic initiatives. Connect with her about these topics by email, AARConnect or LinkedIn. When she's not working, you can find her podcasting with her husband, exploring new hiking trails, photographing, and spending time with her family.

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