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September 2012 Highlights



ATIA and RESNA Catalyst Partnership Renewed for 2013!
The RESNA Catalyst Project is pleased to announce the continuation of its partnership with the Assistive Technology Industries Association (ATIA), to offer live and archived webinars to all AT Act Entities. Additionally, individual states may purchase a subscription for additional seats directly from ATIA. The RESNA Catalyst Project webinar seats will be available October 1, 2012, and a code will be provided to access these training opportunities. For more details about this exciting partnership, please contact Joey Wallace at

New AT for Employers Web Portal is the web address to the new AT for Employers Web Portal. The Portal is designed as a gateway for businesses and employers to increase their understanding and use of AT in the workplace while accessing resources such as AT Act Program services. Please take a look at the Portal and share this site with others.

This AT for Employer Web Portal is a work in progress, and the current version will evolve over time. As such, we want to hear from you! If you have comments and suggestions to improve this Portal, please email them to Paul Galonsky at, or call at 703-524-6686. Watch for a date in the upcoming months for a Webinar tour of the Portal.

Call for AT & Employment Content for AT Program News (ATPN)
ATPN is brainstorming AT for Employment. Content for this edition may include...

  • emerging best practices
  • lessons learned
  • success stories
  • new resources
  • AT tool kits
  • ideas for marketing/outreach to employers
  • partnerships to know about
  • initiatives you'd like to read more about

Please send ideas or submissions to by October 3rd, 2012.

RESNA Catalyst Project to Exhibit at United States Business Leadership Network’s (USBLN) 15th Annual Conference
RESNA Catalyst Project Director Joey Wallace will be networking and exhibiting information on AT Act programs and AT for Employment at the next USBLN conference, October 1- 4, in Orlando, FL. This Annual Conference & Expo is the preeminent national event that taps into the vast economic potential of the full inclusion of people with disabilities.

The RESNA Catalyst Project: Evaluation Report of Year Two
This external evaluation report prepared by Deborah Levy of SuccessLinks, LLC, summarizes data gathered from surveys and interviews about the provision of the RESNA Catalyst Project’s technical assistance for AT Act Grantees FY 2011 -2012. You can read the report online in the Grantees Only section of the RESNA Catalyst Project’s website at

Upcoming Events

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. Mark your calendars now!

Save the date! RESNA 2013 Annual Conference
Hyatt Regency Bellevue, Bellevue, WA - June 19 - 24, 2013
Seattle's desirable Eastside is the setting for RESNA 2013! One day of the conference will overlap with ICORR 2013, the International Conference on Rehabilitation Robotics, featuring the world's leading research labs and clinics in the field.

Upcoming Deadlines

  • December 3, 2012: Instructional course and workshop proposals
  • January 14, 2013: Scientific and Student Scientific Papers
  • April 26, 2012: Student Design Competition

Sign up to receive RESNA conference news via e-mail at


Upcoming Events

Three Part Webinar Series on Transition
Statewide AT programs must spend 5% of its state leadership funds on transition activities. Transition activities must relate to students with disabilities transitioning under IDEA and activities related to individuals with disabilities maintaining or transitioning to community.
This three part webinar series will focus on Transition activities related to Youth Leadership, Policy, and State Teams. Each one hour Webinar will highlight activities from several statewide AT programs. All webinars are free, and will begin at 3:00p.m. Eastern Time.

Webinar Two: Youth Leadership- October 17, 3:00-4:00p.m. Eastern Time
Presenters: Marylyn Hammond (UT), Ann Shor (MA), and Kathleen Laurin (MT). Register at:

Webinar Three: AT Transition Policy- October 31st 3:00-4:00p.m. Eastern Time
Presenters: Linda Jaco (OK) and Kathy Hayfield (VA). Register at:

Recent Events

Archived Webinar Series- Part One on State Transition Teams- September 12, 2012
Presenters: Janice Carson (ID) and Susy Wood (IL)
View archived webinar (video) Webinar Transcript PowerPoint Presentation or visit

AT for Employment Work Group Call September 27, 2012
This Work Group call focused on reviewing the new AT for Employer Web Portal. An archived recording and notes of this call is available for your review at:


Upcoming Events

Time Running Out to Register! 16th Annual “Bridges to Better Advocacy” Conference - October 23-25, 2012- Sign up by October 5, before registration increases!
The Annual “Bridges to Better Advocacy” Conference will once again be held at the Hilton Garden Inn in Austin, TX. This year’s conference will include a one day preconference focusing on Medicaid and Complex Mobility Equipment. New Session Added to Two-Day Agenda: “Two AT-Related Medicare Initiatives: The Power Mobility Prior Authorization Demonstration Project and Proposed HR 4378” - presented by Donald E. Clayback, Executive Director, National Coalition for Assistive and Rehab Technology (NCART). Conference flyers/registration forms available on our website: or by contacting Lynn Urquhart ( or Jim Sheldon (

When Booking Your Hotel Rooms (Room Block now extended through October 4th) - You can follow the directions in our conference flyer, following link above. However, since we are so close to the expiration of our room block (and cannot guarantee an extension), you are probably best off to contact Jesse Garcia directly at the Hilton Garden Inn, at 800-684-7250 or 512-457-7961 (referencing “Bridges to Better Advocacy: 2012 Conference” or “Group Code BBA”). And please contact Lynn Urquhart if you have any problems.

To inquire about information for the Preconference and Conference, including scholarships registration forms, contact Lynn Urquhart, More information will soon appear on


“AT Advocate” to resume as Electronic-Only Newsletter
This newsletter has been published periodically since 1996 with hard copies made available to P&A; programs and AT projects among others. Our most recent issue was published and distributed in late 2010/early 2011. A new version of “Medicaid, AT and the Courts” will be published on our website during October. This and future newsletters will be published in an electronic format only.

Late Breading News! A Big Victory in Texas--Federal court says Texas Medicaid program cannot bar funding for standing wheelchairs.
On September 18th the Southern District of Texas in Koenning v. Suehs, 6:11-CV-00006, held that the state’s Medicaid policy of categorically denying coverage of mobile standers (included standing wheelchairs), without consideration of medical necessity, violates the reasonable standards and amount, duration, and scope provisions of the federal Medicaid Act and its implementing regulations, and is preempted by the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause.

Even Later Breaking News! Utah Court Says Medicaid Cannot Bar Funding of Communication Devices to Adults
Conley v. Department of Health, 2012 UT App 274 (Utah Ct. of App. Sept. 27, 2012) was a challenge to an administrative hearing decision which affirmed the Medicaid agency’s denial of a speech augmentative communication device (SACD) for adult plaintiffs. The plaintiffs claimed Utah policy violated the reasonable standards and comparability provisions of the federal Medicaid Act. The agency claimed the SACDs were included in speech language therapy services, available only to pregnant individuals and those under the age of 21 through EPSDT. The agency insisted it did not matter if the devices also fit the definitions of durable medical equipment (DME), prosthetics, and speech pathology services, because it had discretion to determine which category would include SACDs. The Utah Appeals Court held that the agency abused its discretion in determining that SACDs were not a covered service for adults. “Simply put, it is unreasonable for the State to opt into the categories in which SACDs could be categorized for all categorically and medically needy individuals but then to limit coverage of certain services within those categories by the age of the recipient.” Noting that Utah’s Medicaid Provider Manual specifically defined communication devices as “prosthetics,” the court held that “SACDs cannot reasonably be prosthetics and communication equipment for those individuals under age twenty-one and pregnant women, but only be speech pathology services for non-pregnant individuals age twenty-one and older.

Anyone wishing to obtain copies of the decisions can contact Diana Straube (


Upcoming Events

Data Collection Work Group
The Data Collection for AFP Work Group continues to meet to plan the best manner to collect the information that tells the loan program stories. This group would like to hear from you! Please contact Jason at if you want to participate in this group.

Teleconference Series - New Directors of Telework Loan Programs - October 9th 2012 1:00p.m. Eastern Time
The next installment of the Telework New Directors conference call series will be Tuesday, October 9th at 1:00pm. This call will be an “open forum” and a chance for all participants to engage in peer-to-peer assistance. If you would like to participate, please contact Jason Luciano at

Recent Events

Second Teleconference on AFP Grant Competition Information Call - August 28th
Brian Bard and Rob Groenendaal of RSA speak in a second conference call about the AFP Grant competition for 2012. They discuss grant application requirements and answer questions from participants. This call was recorded and is on the RESNA Catalyst Website at

Teleconference Series - New Directors of Telework Loan Programs - September 11th
To follow up on the New Directors of Financial Loan Programs series the RESNA Catalyst Project hosted last year, this series focuses on some of the unique needs of the Telework Loan Programs. This call focused on a discussion of the findings of the Telework Top Performers Group in 2011 (document located at If you would like to participate, please contact Jason Luciano at


National Disability Employment Awareness Month 2012
Held each October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is a national campaign that raises awareness about disability employment issues and celebrates the many and varied contributions of America's workers with disabilities. This year's theme is "A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?" Download a toolkit at:
Source: ODEP

ODEP Funded Webinars in Celebration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month
The Employer Assistance and Resource Network (EARN) is hosting four free weekly webinars in celebration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). The brief webinars take place every Thursday in October from 2:00 - 2:30 pm EST. Register now at for any or all of the following sessions:
October 4: Beyond Yellow Ribbons: Creating Disability Inclusive Workplaces for Recently Returned Veterans with Disabilities
October 11: Research and Practice for Promoting Disability Disclosure
October 18: Increased Options, Stronger Support: How States Can Assist Businesses in Employing People with Disabilities
October 25: The Workforce Recruitment Program: Tapping the Talent of Students and Graduates with Disabilities

Department of Defense's Computer/Electronic Accommodations Program (CAP) Releases New Mobile App
CAP has released a free app for Apple Devices, now available in the iTunes App Store. The new app lets users browse the latest news and tips on assistive technology, scan CAP's calendar of events and stay connected to the disability community. An Android version is coming soon. CAP works to make the Federal Government a model employer of people with disabilities by providing job accommodations and equal access to electronic and information technology.

New AT Radio & Podcasts in Indiana
INDATA has launched an internet radio station. 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:

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

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:; Website: