Delegate’s Report from the AARC House of Delegates Meeting
in Indianapolis, Indiana October 2017
AARC Disaster relief fund: This year a resolution for a “one-time” action to release disaster relief funds to the 27 Respiratory Therapists on Puerto Rico was brought before the house. The measure was voted unanimous approval to issue the $500 disaster relief fund to ALL Respiratory Therapists, who are AARC members, on the island without having them fill out the required paperwork. The Executive Board approved the measure also. The vote also included a waiver of the annual AARC dues for those affected by the recent storm in Puerto Rico; this bill passed unanimously as well. The house and state affiliates donated a total of $23,506 with over $2,000 in personal donations to be added to the disaster relief fund. We are caring professionals helping our associates in need.
US Flag presentation: Connecticut Society for Respiratory Care donated 3’ X 5’ flags to ALL RT’s at the House of Delegates Meeting that served in our military. There was a letter inside thanking them for their sacrifice and service. A flag was also given to Debra Skees who began the Military Roundtable and has been instrumental in coordinating the state’s Military Liaison Program.
Membership: The total membership is about 500 away from 40,000 members. The Executive Board agreed that if the 40,000-member number is reached each state affiliate will receive an additional $1 per active member for support from the AARC. We need to boost membership in our state. Please be aware that all members are welcomed to our monthly meeting and see how we are working to progress our professional occupation to be recognized as an integral part of the health system.
COPD Action Plan: We want to get the word out that the AARC was integral in the development of the National COPD Action Plan.
New APEX Award: This is a further AARC recognition program-of hospitals, (LTAC) Long-Term Acute Care, and home medical companies that are high-quality departments. The AARC has encouraged state affiliates to try for the award. AARC VP Shawna Strickland challenged the House of Delegates/Presidents/state board members to go and promote RT departments-which do not work in but are in your state to apply for this new prestigious APEX award.
Strategic Objectives Ad Hoc Committees: The Ad hoc committees were set up to mirror the mission, and vision of the Executive Board of the AARC to accomplish future goals and maintain a focus on the concept of the profession moving forward. Each state has a representative to one of these committees. The hope is that more resolutions, from the grassroots members, would result.
AARC update from Shawna Strickland:
The AARC has beta tested state affiliate communities on AARC connect. This service will be available to ALL states in November 2017.
The AARC Membership Challenge continues. State affiliates are asked to send representatives to RT departments, schools or companies where RTs work to discuss the benefits of AARC membership. The AARC strongly urged that the repetitive not work at that institution. While at the visit, a picture should be taken so that it can be posted on AARCConnect and be posted on the HOD-Pres list serve.
The Neonatal/Pediatrics course is available with CRCEs
There is a new program being offered at the AARC University on Tracheotomies.
Respiratory Care Week is October 22-28 (Respiratory Therapists Working Together to Save Lives).
AARC update from Anna Marie Hummel:
HR 3737 is a small bill that singles out Medicare Advantage plans.
HR 3446-Restoring Board Immunity (RBI) is a federal bill looking at licensing boards. This is all part of anti-trust litigation. It is focusing on stand alone or independent licensing boards. Many states already have their licensing boards under larger boards or are moving to do make that happen. Currently, 2/3 of our state boards are under larger boards.
- House Bill 3737 was discussed which involves Medicare Advantage that includes tele-health medicine
- That the CMS Innovation Center is moving in a new direction and is seeking input at this time HR 3446 – Restoring Board immunity. This is a bill to prevent anti-trust laws. Independent licensing boards are the most vulnerable. The link to the bill was posted: govtrack.us/congress/bills/115/hr3446 Read more about this bill here
- A reminder that future PACT dates are April 30 and May 1, 2018, and April 8 and 19, 2019.
AARC President Dr. Brian Walsh:
He has challenged state affiliates to see more resolutions put forth from state affiliates that are focused on the strategic and his Presidential goals.
Goals: Education requirements for BS degree. The goal was that by 2020 80% of practicing RTs would hold a BS degree. Currently, only 55.1% of practicing RTs have a BS degree. CoArc accreditation standards require that all new RT programs have to be BS programs. There have been 5 new BS or higher programs developed since 2014.Remind your colleagues to use tuition assistance to obtain their BS degree.
RT’s with advanced degree tend to…
- Be an AARC member
- Hold specialty credentials
- Hold the RRT credential
- Hold supervisor/educator positions
He discussed some of the survey results supporting the development of an APRT (Advance Practicing Respiratory Therapist). This has the equivalency of other mid-level providers (PA, APRN)
Safety: Is another challenge by the AARC President
Lead and advance safety of Respiratory Care including mechanical ventilation; maintain and expand relevant alliances with crucial organizations for safety and competence
Value: His other challenge is to expand research efforts and continue to promote the international respiratory community.
AARC Update for the state affiliates:
AARC is investigating direct deposit for affiliates-so, please keep your officer contact information up to date with the AARC until that happens to not lose revenue that is due to the state.
State Captain-Volunteers are needed for the COPD Foundation.
Download the (Patient Safety Summit 2017 App) and (Patient Aider App) for your smart phones-patient safety checklist. This is a free, beneficial tool to providers and receivers of care.
Remind affiliates and members to utilize or use the tools found on the online AARC University for managers/educators/researchers. It is currently underutilized.
AARC now able to offer CMEs to MDs and CHEST will be offering their meetings.
House of Delegates Donations for this meeting total: $43,003
Disaster Relief $23,506
Bill Lamb Fund $100
Research Fund $750
Intnl. Fellowship $2700
Bill Bitzel Fund $3370
Resolutions Presented at the Meeting:
#67-17-10 (Delegate Claire Aloan, NY)
Resolved that the AARC continue the free student membership program currently offered, and that additional efforts be made to work with plans to convert more of these students to active membership prior to graduation, including but not limited to direct contact with Program Directors (PDs) and Directors of Clinical Education (DCEs) at essential time points (e.g., when students begin the program, 180 days prior to graduation when conversion rates are lowest, etc), as well as presentations to PDs and DCEs from programs who have had success in converting graduates to active membership. This motion was defeated.
#67-17-11 (Delegate Stephen Smith, NY)
Resolved that the AARC support states in obtaining legislation to require future respiratory therapy graduates from an associate degree program to earn a baccalaureate or higher degree in respiratory care within seven (7) years of completing their associate degree, to maintain their license to practice. This motion was defeated.
The Best Practices Presentations:
Creative fundraising focused on web page development, special fundraising events, and state-society publications and advertising.
Student Membership mentee/mentor relationships focused on a mentorship program within a state. Mentor/mentee responsibilities were presented. Their state’s VP is charged with assigning mentee/mentor by region.
Managers meet and greet vendors at the state meeting. This shows vendor support so vendors will support our meeting.
Dates to remember:
June 1st application deadline for students to attend summer forum in San Antonio
October 12, 2018, deadline for students to attend winter meeting in Las Vegas,
2020, Congress will be in Orlando Florida.
Respectfully submitted by;
Jason Wright MBA, ACHE, RRT