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AARC Staff Meet with Local Congressman on HR 2619
Take Home: “You Can Do it Too!”

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August 8, 2013

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AARC leadership met with U.S. Congressman Kenny Marchant (R-TX) Wednesday to discuss HR 2619, the Medicare Respiratory Therapist Access Act. Marchant is the Representative for the district in which the AARC’s Irving Texas Executive Office is located.

AARC Executive Director Tom Kallstrom, MBA, RRT, FAARC; AARC Director of Government Affairs Cheryl West, MHA; and AARC Past Executive Director Sam Giordano, MBA, RRT, FAARC, had the opportunity to sit down with Marchant at his Irving office. The AARC officials took advantage of the August break in order to meet with Marchant while he is back in his home office.

Cheryl West, Kenny Marchant (R-TX), Tom Kallstrom, and Sam Giordano met at Marchant’s local office on HR 2619.

During the month of August, Members of Congress are usually back home and much more accessible than any other time of the year. “You can do it too!” said Cheryl West.

“We want to challenge all of our members to make these kinds of meetings with their Congressional Representatives,” said Kallstrom. Scheduling a meeting with your member of Congress is not an exclusive opportunity reserved for large organizations or prominent individuals, he noted.

Making a meeting with your Representative is easy:

  • Find their local contact information
  • Call to set a meeting to discuss HR 2619
  • Talk about what you do and how HR 2619 would make respiratory therapy services more accessible to patients
  • Urge them to become a co-sponsor of the bill

Your State Society leadership and your state Political Advocacy Contact Team (PACT) member have more tips on how to  request a meeting with your member of Congress, detailed background information on HR 2619 and “leave with” documents you could use in any meeting. Please contact your Society for more information or just contact Cheryl West, at the AARC

About HR 2619

HR 2619 would allow qualified respiratory therapists to provide education and instruction in disease self-management for Medicare patients diagnosed with certain chronic lung diseases. The legislation will allow physicians to utilize the respiratory therapists’ skill set to educate Medicare beneficiaries on how to recognize and reduce symptoms and triggers of their disease to prevent exacerbations that can lead to costly inpatient acute care.