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December 2012 Highlights

PROJECT WIDE NEWS


Announcements

Happy New Year and thank you for all you do!
As we begin 2013, the RESNA Catalyst Project thanks all the AT Act Entities for continuing to make the lives of people who use Assistive Technology a bit brighter. Your work is so important and valuable for all those you serve. We want to take a moment to say how much we appreciate what you do. Thank you from Joey, Jason, and Paul, and Happy 2013.

Save the Date! RESNA Catalyst Project’s Employment Summit and Two Project Directors Meetings - Bethesda, Maryland May 6-9, 2013
Three meetings are planned for the spring of 2013 for AT Act Entities. The Catalyst Project will host an Employment Summit May 8-9, 2013 for all AT Act Entities at the Bethesda, Maryland Hyatt Regency. Two Project Director Meetings will be conducted in conjunction with the Summit. ATAP and the Catalyst Project will co-host a Statewide AT Program Directors May 6-7, 2013. In addition, there will be a Financial Loan Best Practices Institute May 7, 2013 for AFP/Telework/Title 1 loan program staff. The RESNA Catalyst Project will continue to work with an Employment Summit Planning Committee, the Catalyst Steering Committee Subgroup for Statewide AT Programs, and the Subgroup for AFP/Telework Programs to plan the three meetings. Book your room today and mark your calendars now!

ATIA and RESNA Catalyst Partnership Coupon Code
The RESNA Catalyst Project will continue its partnership with the Assistive Technology Industries Association (ATIA), to offer live and archived webinars to all AT Act Entities. It’s easy to register online with for Live Broadcasts or Archives using coupon code CATPR13. There are 45+ recordings available in the Archives portfolio . A new 2013 schedule will be posted in December. Additionally, individual states may purchase a subscription for additional seats directly from ATIA. For more details on the program, including the new Catalyst Webinar Subscription option for sister agencies not covered under the AT Act Entities access criteria, go to: www.atia.org/catalystwebprogram, or contact Joey Wallace, joeywallace@resna.org.

Exhibit Volunteers Needed for 2013 ATIA Conference
If you are planning on attending ATIA this year, please consider volunteering at the RESNA Catalyst Project’s exhibit booth. Please contact Paul Galonsky, pgalonsky@resna.org if you are available. Your support is greatly appreciated!

Upcoming Events

Registration Now Open! Webinar: Assistive Devices for D/deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Populations -January 9, 2013 3:00 to 4:00p.m. Eastern Time
The RESNA Catalyst Project will host a webinar featuring Valeria Stafford-Mallis, from Alternative Communication Services. Ms. Stafford-Mallis will provide training on hearing impairment devices, costs, new innovations, and resources. This webinar will be of interest to all Statewide AT and Financing Loan programs. Register online at https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/202335895.

Registration Now Open! Webinar: Introducing the Assistive Technology for Employer and Business Web Portal - Tuesday, January 22, 2p.m. to 3:00p.m. Eastern Time
Sönke Dornblut and Anne Long with Assistive Technology in New Hampshire along with RESNA Catalyst Project Staff Paul Galonsky will provide a webinar tour of the Assistive Technology for Employer and Business Web Portal. This webinar will formerly introduce attendees to this new resource and show how to take advantage of the information it contains. Register online at https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/652945967.

Registration Now Open! Webinar: Assistive Technology and the Interactive Process of Employee Accommodations-January 23, 2013 2:00p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Eastern Time
The RESNA Catalyst Project, Southwest ADA Center, and ADA National Network will present a webinar on how AT demonstrations, equipment loans, and support and technical assistance from the ADA National Network may enhance an interactive employee accommodation process. Register online at www.adaconferences.org/RESNA.

STATEWIDE AT PROGRAMS

Upcoming Events

Statewide AT Project Director’s Meeting Planning Call- January 7, 2013 3:00p.m. Eastern Time
The Planning Committee will continue to work through recent draft agendas for the 2013 Statewide AT Project Directors Meeting. Committee Members may call 800-211-4163 and pass code 0521244# the day of the meeting to join the call.

Statewide AT Program New Directors Call-Thursday, January 10, 2013 3:00-4:00p.m. Eastern Time
In 2013, the New Directors call will take place every other month. These calls will cycle through the New Director’s Orientation Modules found on the RENSA Catalyst Website: http://www.resnaprojects.org/statewide/newdirectors/index.html. In addition, each call will allow ample time for New Director’s to share and discuss project highlights as well as ask advice on project issues and challenges. To join this call, dial 800-351-6810 Pass code: 46172076#. All Directors new and old are welcome!

Recent Events

Archived AT and Transition Webinar Series- Parts One, Two, and Three Now Available
The three part AT and Transition Webinar Series is now complete and available in the RESNA Catalyst Project Webinar Archives. According to the Webinar evaluations, the series overall was very successful in achieving the learning objectives set out for participants. As such, look for more of these types of webinars in 2013. You can view each AT and Transition Webinar at http://www.resnaprojects.org/statewide/webedarchive.html.

PAAT PROGRAMS


Announcements

New National AT Project Website - Better Look, More Functional, Some Sections Still Being Populated
Earlier this month, Neighborhood Legal Services went live with a newly-designed website. This new website retains the same general web address for the home page, www.nls.org. However, all other web addresses (URLs) within the site have changed. Importantly, the new URL for the National AT Advocacy Project is now www.nls.org/Disability/NationalAssistiveTechnologyProject.
The new site has created the opportunity to reorganize and to delete items that are outdated. However, in this process, some key sections of the National AT site have yet to be fully populated with the documents we intend to retain. Here are new URLs to some popular sections:
AT Advocate Newsletters (www.nls.org/Disability/NationalAssistiveTechnologyProject/ATAdvocateNewsletters)
Did You Know Series (www.nls.org/Disability/NationalAssistiveTechnologyProject/DidYouKnow)
FAQs (www.nls.org/Disability/NationalAssistiveTechnologyProject/DidYouKnow/FAQs);
AT Funding Manuals (www.nls.org/Disability/NationalAssistiveTechnologyProject/FundingofATManualSeries).
If there are items you were used to seeing on the old site that you cannot find, contact either Jim Sheldon (jsheldon@nls.org) or Diana Straube (dstraube@nls.org).

Supporting Medicaid-Funded Standing Wheelchairs
This has been an initiative of both the National AT Project and the New York PAAT Project housed within Neighborhood Legal Services. In addition, half of the recent Bridges to Better Advocacy preconference was dedicated to this topic, as well as a PAAT newsletter:
(www.nls.org/files/Disability%20Law%20Hotlines/IMPACT_Summer_2012_-_Medical_Equipment_Series_-_Standing_Wheelchairs.pdf).

New York’s State PAAT has several new Medicaid hearings involving standing wheelchairs. New York’s State PAAT is also involved in supporting the work of AT advocates throughout the country on Medicaid hearings and litigation involving standing wheelchairs. (Our State PAAT project is expecting to file an amicus curiae or friend of the court brief, in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, in the Koenning standing wheelchair case in which Texas Medicaid has appealed the district court’s decision.)
In order to better support this work, we are looking to upgrade our resource materials that relate to the medical benefits that are connected to the use of standing wheelchairs. Please send us any published articles or links to publications that report on the medical benefits obtained through the use of standing wheelchairs. We do have the RESNA position paper on standing wheelchairs published several years ago and a number of other important resources, but would ask that you err in sending us information even though we might already have it. Please send articles to Jim Sheldon (jsheldon@nls.org) or Diana Straube (dstraube@nls.org).

ALTERNATIVE FINANCING AND TELEWORK LOAN PROGRAMS


Announcement

SAVE THE DATE! AFP Director Meeting- May 7th 2013
The RESNA Catalyst project is sponsoring a one day AFP Director meeting in Bethesda, MD. This will be the day before the RESNA Catalyst project Employment Summit for AT Act funded programs. Be on the lookout for more information soon!

AFP Teleconference Series Schedule for 2013
You have spoken - and we have listened! Based on your needs assessment and feedback you have given the RESNA Catalyst Project, we have created a draft AFP teleconference schedule for 2013. Subject to change:

    January 22, 2p.m. Eastern - Introducing the AT for Employer and Business Portal

    February 19, 2p.m. Eastern - New Project Staff Orientation

    March 19, 2p.m. Eastern - Financial Literacy Part I

    April 16, 2p.m. Eastern - Sustainability for AFPs

    June 18 2p.m. Eastern - Preparing for RSA Review

    July 16, 2p.m. Eastern - Collaborating with other AT Act Programs

    August 20, 2p.m. Eastern - Needs Assessment for 2014

Recent Events

Data Collection Work Group- December 11, 2012
The new and improved Data Collection Work Group met to begin the discussions around proposing changes to the RSA/MIS662. The hope of this group is to have data elements from the RSA/MIS572 and 662 documents more closely align so that the true stories of the AT Act sponsored programs can be told.

Teleconference Series - Telework New Directors - December 11, 2012
The final call in the series for new directors of Telework Loan Programs was held December 11. This call wrapped up the series, and it will be replaced with the above listed Teleconference Series for Loan Programs.

OTHER RESOURCES

CATADA’S Self-paced Video Tutorials
The CATADA team recently recorded video tutorials that will help new users learn to use the site and help existing users refresh their memory when needed. Links to these videos will be added to www.catada.info in the near future. In addition, look for the CATADA team to host a guided tour of the site in late winter/early spring, 2013.

Annual Disability Statistics Compendium
Each year, the Disability Statistics Compendium is released in November at an event held on Capitol Hill. Presentation materials, including videos and transcripts from the event are available at http://disabilitycompendium.org/event-live. You can also request a copy of the Compendium or download it on this website.

ODEP’s Online Workplace Flexibility Toolkit
ODEP has a website titled “Workplace Flexibility Toolkit: A Unique Collection of Resources to Help Maintain a Strong Balance of Work and Life”. To learn more, visit: http://www.dol.gov/odep/workplaceflexibility/.

New AT Radio & Podcasts in Indiana
INDATA has launched an internet radio station. AssistiveTechnologyRadio.com broadcasts 24/7 and includes a wide variety of AT programs. Programs include INDATA’s two podcasts as well as various AT training sessions. To view and listen to the growing list of episodes, visit: http://www.eastersealstech.com/on-air/.
INDATA will include audio content from other AT projects. To submit radio content or to learn more about INDATA's AT radio and podcasts contact Wade Wingler at wwingler@eastersealscrossroads.org.


The RESNA Catalyst Project provides technical assistance to Statewide Assistive Technology Programs, Alternative Financing Programs & Access to Telework Programs, and Protection and Advocacy for Assistive Technology Programs. RESNA, the Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology Society of North America, is the premier professional organization dedicated to promoting the health and well-being of people with disabilities through increasing access to technology solutions.

This newsletter is produced by the RESNA Catalyst Project under a grant funded by the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA), U.S. Department of Education (RSA/ED) through the Assistive Technology Act of 1998, as amended. The information contained herein does not necessarily reflect the position or policy of RSA/ED or RESNA and no official endorsement of the materials should be inferred.

Contact Information: RESNA Catalyst Project, 1700 North Moore Street, Suite 1540, Arlington, VA 22209-1903; (703) 524-6686 (voice), (866) 342-6572 (voice), (703) 524-6630 (FAX), (703) 524-6639 (TTY). Email: catalyst@resna.org; Website: http://www.resnaprojects.org.