Today marks the 32nd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the groundbreaking U.S. civil rights legislation – signed into law on July 26th, 1990 – that prohibits discrimination and guarantees opportunity in mainstream American life for people with disabilities.
To honor the ADA and help advance inclusion – in all facets of society – for the patients we serve, AOPA is excited to announce the So Kids Can Move initiative. In partnership with the National Association for the Advancement of Orthotics & Prosthetics (NAAOP), we are launching this awareness raising, state-based policy initiative to expand access to recreational prostheses as medically necessary healthcare for children on a state-by-state basis. So Kids Can Move will expand access to the health and social benefits of physical activity for children who need appropriate, evidence-based prosthetic care to do so.
So Kids Can Move will start by targeting Oregon and Washington. We will seek to have them become the first states after Maine to cover recreational prostheses for children. To learn more about Maine’s recent efforts read UNE alum convinces legislators to pass new law regarding prosthetic devices.
To kickstart and help promote awareness of the So Kids Can Move initiative, AOPA and NAAOP are joining forces with Forrest Stump (a Pacific Northwest nonprofit advocacy organization dedicated to promoting equitable access to physical activity for individuals with disabilities) during their annual awareness and advocacy event next month. This year’s event is in conjunction with the renowned Hood To Coast (HTC) Relay, which draws over 19,000 people from 40 countries and all 50 states to run this race, but people with disabilities make up less than 1% of participants.
Forrest Stump’s team of 12 physically challenged “athlete-advocates,” VI guide, and prosthetist/orthotist, will run HTC’s 200 miles in 36-hours on Aug 26-27, 2022 with one message: People with disabilities deserve the right to exercise, but lack of insurance coverage of medically necessary prosthetic & orthotic care – and other assistive devices – prevents equitable access to participation in physical activity.
After piloting this effort in Oregon and Washington, our hope is to expand this initiative to other states to see this same policy enacted. This effort will further AOPA’s state-based policy work and enable even more of our members to provide and get reimbursed for recreational prostheses to the children you see.
To learn more about HTC and the Forrest Stump Athletes, visit their race page.
Do you have questions or are you interested in bringing So Kids Can Move to your state? Contact info@AOPAnet.org.