RAND Value Simulation Study
As part of the Prosthetics 2020 Initiative, the RAND Corporation conducted a value simulation, the “Economic Value of Advanced Transfemoral Prosthetics” where they simulated the differential clinical outcomes and costs of microprocessor-controlled knees (MPKs) compared with non-MPKs (NMPKs), and conducted a literature review of the clinical and economic impacts of prosthetic knees, convened technical expert panel meetings, and implemented a simulation model over a ten-year time period for unilateral transfemoral Medicare amputees with Medicare Functional Classification Levels of 3 and 4.

Data Regarding Provision and Utilization of Orthotic and Prosthetic Services
AOPA, through its partnership with the research and data firm Dobson DaVanzo & Associates, LLC, has obtained a plethora of data specific to the provision and utilization of Orthotic & Prosthetic services.   This data, which is only available to current AOPA members, tells a compelling story about the type of O&P services Medicare patients are receiving as well as what provider categories (O&P, physicians, DME suppliers, pharmacies, etc.) are providing them.  It also provides valuable information regarding patients who initially receive off the shelf (OTS) items who later require custom fitted or custom fabricated items.  In addition, the compendium contains valuable information regarding the cost effectiveness of O&P services relative to their effect on overall healthcare expenditures for Medicare patients. Member login required to access.

Medicare Spending on Prosthetics from 2010-2014
Overall spending on prosthetics has decreased 15%, while spending on outdated technology has actually decreased.

February 2016 Military Medicine Supplement
Military Medicine is the official journal publication of the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States (AMSUS), and this edition contains two articles of note: 1) Suggested Guidelines for the Prescription of Orthotic Services, Device Delivery, Education, and Follow-up Care: A Multidisciplinary White Paper and 2) Economic Value of Prosthetic Services Among Medicare Beneficiaries: A Claims-Based Retrospective Cohort Study

Center for O&P Learning/ Evidence-Based Practice (COPL)


  • Balkman, Geoff, BA, MS, CPO, “Development of a Mobility Outcome Measure for People who use Lower Limb Orthoses”
  • John DesJardins, PhD, “The Quantification of Containment Conditions Used for Directed Growth Within Infant Cranial Remolding Orthoses: A Pilot Study”
  • Sun Hae Jang, M.Sc., CO, FAAOP, “Normative Values, Reliability, and Validity of the Global Visual Gait Assessment for Measuring Orthotic Biomechanical Outcomes for Use in Post-Stroke Patients”
  • Shannon Mathis, Ph.D. “Gait Analysis Using Video: Defining K-Level in Lower-Limb Prosthesis Users”
  • Shane Wurdeman, PhD, MSPO, CP, FAAOP, “Prospective Falls Analysis Among Lower Limb Prosthesis Users- Understanding the Role of Prostheses in Reducing Fall Risk”
  • Eric Weber, CPO, FAAOP, “Longitudinal Tracking of Stability Events and AFO Compliance Among Stroke Survivors During Sub-Acute and Chronic Phases of Recovery”


  • Sarah Anderson, La Trobe University, “Comparison of quality of life in people with partial foot or transtibial amputation”
  • Brian Kaluf, BSE, CP, Ability Prosthetics and Orthotics, Inc., “Hydraulic and Microprocessor Controlled Ankle-Foot Prostheses for Limited Community Ambulators with Unilateral Transtibial Amputation: Pilot Study”
  • Sarah Chang, PhD, Northwestern University, “A pilot study to evaluate the effects of the hydraulic ankle-foot prostheses on standing and walking in K2-level ambulators”
  • Benjamin Padilla, MD, University of California San Francisco Benoiff Children’s Hospital, “The Effects of a Custom Pectus Carintum Orthosis on Dosing Response and Quality of Life”
  • Eric Weber, CPO, FAAOP, Hanger Clinic – Department of Clinical and Scientific Affairs, “Mobility and Global Health among Users of Lower Limb Orthoses: The Establishment of a National Data Base”
  • Chris Hovorka, Ph.D., CPO, LPO, FAAOP, Georgia Institute of Technology, “Gait and Motion Control Benefits of Custom Molded Passive-Dynamic AFOs versus Custom Fit Carbon Composite AFOs in Persons with Neuromuscular Impairment”
  • Kenton Kaufman, PhD, Mayo Clinic, “Prevalence, correlates, and risk of prescription drug use and abuse in individuals with above knee amputations”



2015 Special Projects

Systematic Review Projects

Special Projects

  • Kenton Kaufman, PhD, PE, Mayo Clinic, “Risk factors and costs associated with accidental falls among adults with above-knee amputations: a populations-based study”
  • AOPA will commission Dobson/DaVanzo to analyze Medicare claims data from 2011-2014 and Part D prescription claims information for expanded and updated research into the cost effectiveness of timely O&P intervention and patient outcomes, continuing in the pathway of the prior cost-effectiveness report and the Mobility Saves Initiative.

Previous COPL Research Grants



2013 (Research Grant Awards In Progress)

  • Vibhor Agrawal, PhD, University of Miami – “Determining Efficacy of Dynamic Response Prosthetic Feet in K-level 3″

2012 (Research Grant Awards In Progress)

  • Tamara Bushnik, PhD, FACRM, NYU Langone Medical Center, Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine — “Developing an Evidence Based  Approach to Address Functional Level Change in Persons Following Transfemoral  Amputation”
  • Jason Maikos, PhD, Department of Veterans Affairs, New York Harbor Healthcare System — “A Biomechanical and Functional Evaluation of a Microprocessor Controlled Knee Paired with a Powered Ankle-Foot Prosthesis”





Other Special Projects

Systematic Reviews (2013)

  • Marcus Besser, PhD, Thomas Jefferson University, “Orthotic Management of Stroke Patient”
  • Jason Highsmith, DPT, PhD, CP, University of South Florida, “Prosthetic Management following Transtibial Amputation”

Funded by AOPA and Participating Manufacturer Members

Funded by AOPA and Commissioned by the Amputee Coalition