Practitioners and Students Promote OT on the Hill

From left to right: David McGuire, Teresa Plummer, Senator Watson, Brittany Work, Angie Salvucci, and Evan Pendygraft

On February 28, 2017, occupational therapy practitioners and students went to Legislative Plaza in Nashville, TN to help celebrate Occupational Therapy’s Centennial and to promote our profession.  TNOTA President David McGuire, Vice President Brittany Work, Secretary Rita Troxtel, Communications Chair Christine Watt, Membership Chair Evan Pendygraft and Legislative Chair Yvette Hachtel were present representing TNOTA.  Also present to help support our profession were Angie Salvucci, Teresa Plummer, Melissa Amrhein, Molly Camp from OSU, and Jeremiah Ogunmola and Rebecca Russell from TSU.  

We provided legislators and state employees with information regarding an independent study published in Medical Care Research and Review.  Researchers evaluated 19 distinct spending categories and found that “occupational therapy is the only spending category where additional spending has a statistically significant association with lower readmission rates” for the three health conditions studied: heart failure, pneumonia, and acute myocardial infarction”.  They identified occupational therapy as “one spending category that affects both the clinical and social determinants of health” and noted that “investing in OT has the potential to improve care quality without significantly increasing overall hospital spending.”

Senator Bo Watson from Chattanooga stopped by to congratulate us on our Centennial and to reinforce the importance of making sure all our legislators understand occupational therapy and the services we provide to Tennesseans.  Senator Watson is himself a physical therapist and appreciates the value occupational therapists bring to the team. 

Rogers, A. T., Bai, G., Lavin, R. A., & Anderson, G. F. (2016, September 2). Higher hospital spending on occupational therapy is associated with lower readmission rates. Medical Care Research and Review, 1–19.