The National Association for the Advancement of Orthotics & Prosthetics (NAAOP) has issued a call for the O&P profession to help support H.R. 5428, the Injured and Amputee Veterans Bill of Rights. This legislation was recently re-introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by the Chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, Congressman Bob Filner (D-CA). The purpose of this legislation is to alert veterans across the country that they have certain rights to ensure their receipt of high-quality O&P care and to make such care more consistent throughout the country.
This new legislation has some language that differs from the previous bill introduced in the last Congress. The new language in H.R. 5428 adds an enforcement mechanism for the rights created under the bill. Every VA O&P clinic will be required to post a list of rights that injured and amputee veterans have, and the VA will also be required to post these rights on their website and establish a complaint system so that these rights have “teeth.”
According to an NAAOP press release, “NAAOP has always felt that as the spotlight on injured and amputee veterans begins to dim, the attention to meeting the needs of O&P patients will also decrease. That is why enactment of this legislation is so important. No legislation will offer a silver bullet to ensure that all veterans get what they need when the need it, but this bill is a significant step forward to ensuring that our nation’s veterans will be able to access high-quality care and high-quality practitioners for years to come.”
For those who want to contact their Congressperson and ask him or her to cosponsor this legislation, NAAOP has drafted a support letter to assist interested persons with the task.
For more information, visit www.naaop.org or e-mail [email protected].