Welcome to the Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects (DRRP) Program: Research on Healthcare Policy and Disability

‘Assessment and Investigation of New Coverage Policies for Complex Rehabilitation Technology (CRT) within a Contemporary Accountable Care Environment’

Our Mission is to partner with academia and key disability, industry, and policy stakeholders in a series of interrelated project activities to investigate how current wheelchair (i.e. CRT) health policy impacts health and function, community living and participation of working age people with disabilities.

This project is guided by NIDILRR’s mission to “Generate new knowledge and promote its effective use to improve the abilities of people with disabilities to perform activities of their choice in the community, and also to expand society’s capacity to provide full opportunities and accommodations for its citizens with disabilities.”

Fall/Winter 2021

Finding a Better Way to Pay

Dr. Mark Schmeler Talks Rehab

In this Talk Rehab podcast episode, Dr. Mark Schmeler talks about the upcoming International Seating Symposium (ISS) and the ongoing DRRP Program: Research on Healthcare Policy and Disability… Assessment and Investigation of New Coverage Policies for Complex Rehabilitation Technology (CRT) within a Contemporary Accountable Care Environment.

Click here to access the podcast

Posted 12/31/2021

Finding a Better Way to Pay

Finding a Better Way to Pay

In the latest issue of Lets Get Moving Magazine, Dr. Mark Schmeler, the lead investigator of a federally funded grant seeking to find a better way to pay for complex rehabilitation technology, was interviewed along with his work as an associate professor and vice chair for education and training at the University of Pittsburgh. The article discusses the current work on the grant, the goal of his research and how he hopes it shapes future policy.

Click here to access the magazine

Posted 12/13/2021

CRT Survey

Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) Wheelchair Policy Survey

The University of Pittsburgh, in collaboration with other investigators, seeks the opinion of all stakeholders related to wheelchair service and funding. This work is part of the larger Disability and Rehabilitation Research Project funded to investigate and propose a new policy that better aligns with the needs of people who use wheelchairs as well as those who provide or pay for them. We are seeking broad feedback from all stakeholder groups including people who use wheelchairs, care-partners/caregivers, clinicians, suppliers, manufacturers, policymakers, and funding sources to identify the benefits and short-comings of various types of existing wheelchair policies both in the United States and around the world. Participation includes responding to a series of questions related to your opinion of wheelchair service and funding that includes timeliness, complexity of the process, repairs/maintenance, quality, durability, access to proper equipment. The survey should take 5 to 10 minutes to complete.

Click here to access the survey link

Posted 12/02/2021

ISS Webinar

Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) Service Delivery and Clinical Assessment Research: What Happens Behind the Curtain

Research provides structure and guidance for an ever-changing service delivery and clinical landscape for CRT provision, but do you ever wonder “what are they really doing and how does it affect my practice”? Listen to DRRP Team members provide insight into the plan of what actually happens, and how the plan changes for research related to service delivery and clinical practice in the CRT field. The panelists provide an inside look to the trials and tribulations of CRT research, challenges of development of a seating and mobility assessment index, unveil the mysterious world of CRT research, and identify opportunities for supplies, industry partners, clinicians, policy experts, and CRT users to participate and influence research in the field.

Click here to view the web link

Posted 11/12/2021

Rachel Hibbs

NIDILRR Researcher Receives ASCIP Therapy Leadership Award

Rachel M. Hibbs, DPT, NCS, ATP, an investigator and project lead for the NIDILRR-funded Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects (DRRP) Program: Research on Healthcare Policy and Disability, received the Clinical Excellence Award from the Therapy Leadership Council (TLC) during the Academy of Spinal Cord Injury Professionals (ASCIP) Annual Conference. The award is given to an individual who has demonstrated outstanding clinical care and contributions for clients with SCI/D.

Posted 10/13/2021

Face validity of standardized assessments for WMS evaluations

Journal Publication

Face Validity of Standardized Assessments for Wheeled Mobility & Seating Evaluations

A problem in the Complex Rehabilitation Technology industry is the lack of standardization in the assessment for wheeled mobility and seating (WMS). The aim of this paper was to identify assessment tools commonly used by clinicians during WMS evaluations. After the tools were identified by a panel of 12 subject matter experts, a presentation at the 2018 International Seating Symposium in Vancouver, Canada and the 2018 European Seating Symposium in Dublin, Ireland polled attendees to determine professional opinions of each tool. The Lawshe Content Validity Ratio was used to convert this anecdotal data into numerical data, indicating which tools were most and least used by attendees. Finally, a literature search was conducted to determine the reliability, validity, and International Classification of Functioning, Disability, & Health domain for each measure. The findings indicate that while there are many standardized and reliable assessment tools available for WMS evaluations, most clinicians use only a few standardized assessment tools during WMS evaluations.

Click here to view the full article

Posted 10/01/2021

Podcast Mobility Management

Advocating with Passion: CRT Awareness Week 2021

Preserving access to Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) takes a village… as well as preparation, patience, and passion. Brook McCall, Erin Michael, Mike Osborn, and Mickae Lee share their advocacy stories, as well as tips for creating memorable and meaningful conversations, just in time for National CRT Awareness Week.

Click here to view the full article

Posted 09/21/2021

CRT Awareness Week

Make Your Plans for 2021 CRT Awareness Week hosted by NCART and NRRTS. We wish that every legislator, policymaker, and community member already knew about Complex Rehab Technology (CRT) and the benefits it provides to people with disabilities. While we aren’t there just yet, we’ve made real progress and are increasing the number of decision makers who understand how vital CRT is. National CRT Awareness Week is a chance to keep our momentum moving forward by collectively showcasing what CRT is all about and why protecting access to this specialized equipment is so important.

Click here to view the full article

Posted 09/15/2021

Click here to access older news

The contents of this website were developed under a grant from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR grant number 90DPGE0014-01-00). NIDILRR is a Center within the Administration for Community Living (ACL), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The contents of this website do not necessarily represent the policy of NIDILRR, ACL, or HHS, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.