Posted on July 1, 2016 by Chapter Staff
Originally Published in HAPTA’s e-Newsletter, What’s HAPTAnin’ – July 2016

  • Goodbye snail mail Workers Comp Treatment Plans! Hello electronic submissions
    HB2017 will change current law that only allows snail mail submissions for WC Treatment Plans, and mandates that insurers accept electronic treatment plans. But hold your horses as this doesn’t go into effect until 1/1/2021. The measure will allow insurers 10 business days to deny the treatment plan (previously 7 calendar days).
  • Physical therapist now included as “health care professional” for concussion management alongside athletic trainers.
    SB2557 allows licensed physical therapists to evaluate and provide clearance to youth sports participants who experience a concussion. This bill is an expansion of the current concussion educational program developed jointly by the Dept of Rehabilitation Science of the University of Hawaii and the Hawaii High School Athletics Association.
  • The Start of Telehealth. Where will this take us?
    SB2395 states the state’s Medicaid managed care and fee-for-service programs shall not deny coverage for any service provided through telehealth that would be covered if the service were provided through in-person consultation between a patient and a health care provider. As health care providers, physical therapy can open a door to be directly involved in the now reimbursable form of care.  This bill states and defines rules and regulations regarding Telehealth care.
  • Bring on the Durable Medical Equipment and greater accessibility!
    SB2076 addresses a solution to the problematic competitive bidding program. The same program that has led to the 4-8 week wait for wheelchair and hospital beds, and challenging communication with mainland vendors. It establishes a DME supplier license program that will require 1) agent respond to recorded service within 1 business day, 2) written procedure to handle complaints, 3) notification to consumers within 2 days if supplier cannot provide equipment. Overall, less waiting and more satisfaction.

These bills have passed through the legislative process and will soon become law.

Thoughts or comments on this year’s bills?  Or would you like to be part of the legislative efforts in the upcoming session and advocate for our profession?

Write to us at

Joanne Ishikawa
HAPTA Legislative Committee Chair