No. 1

Message from the President
Conference update, academic program accreditation, policy and more
Ray Grott, RESNA President

This newsletter is an opportunity for me to inform RESNA members about a few of the activities in which your organization is involved. First and foremost is our annual conference, June 10-14 in Denver, CO. Please see the update from John Anschutz, this year's Conference Chair, in the article below. Registration is now open! Follow this link for more details.
People wanting to work in the field of rehabilitation engineering and assistive technology get their academic training in a variety of ways. While a number of college and university programs are providing courses, concentrations, and degrees...Read more

Message from the Conference Chair
A rich environment for new insights, new inspirations, and new relationships

John Anschutz, ATP, RET



It is with great pleasure that I share our RESNA 2015 conference highlights. This year a special emphasis was placed on encouraging presenters to up the interaction level where ever possible. As a result, our talented RESNA members have responded strongly with instructional courses and workshops that are of excellent quality. I'm excited that our program will introduce RESNA members to the "Maker Movement," with examples of leveraging social design and development opportunities. In addition to the outstanding courses and workshops we traditionally offer, we have two new instructional courses...Read More

Board and Committee News

Board nominations due April 17

The Board of Directors has issued a call for nominations to fill three director positions in this year's membership elections. Candidates for the board must be RESNA members in good standing. Make an impact on RESNA's programs and policies! More 


Nominate a deserving colleague for a RESNA award  

Please step forward to help RESNA reward individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to the fields of assistive technology or rehabilitation engineering or for their service to RESNA. The deadline has been extended to March 20. Follow this link for categories, nomination instructions, and more.


SIG Committees seek presentations from members for conference sessions

The Accommodations SIG is seeking interested RESNA members for a "Show and Tell" workshop and a "Works in Progress" workshop at RESNA 2015. Please contact John Wardzala or Cindi Pichler if interested. The Communications Technologies and Computer Access (CTCA) SIG and the Cognitive Technologies and Sensory Loss SIG are holding a joint "Show and Tell" workshop as well. Contact Mark Bresler if you have a project you'd like to showcase.


AT Design Competition Deadlines

  • April 1, 2015 - International SIG Do-It-Yourself AT Design Competition; cash prizes for first, second and third place! See competition webpage for details.
  • April 3, 2015 - Registration deadline for the 2015 Student Design Competition
  • April 17, 2015 - Final project submission deadline for the 2015 Student Design Competition


Government Relations Update
House bill introduced to improve access to speech-generating devices
HR 628, the Steve Gleason Act of 2015, would allow Medicare beneficiaries to transfer ownership of these devices to the patient, thereby removing them from the capped-rental rule. Eye-gaze is included. Find out how you can help. 

AT Act Programs now part of U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services

All AT Act Programs, including the Alternative Financing Programs, are being transferred from the Rehabilitation Services Administration/U.S. Dept. of Education to the Administration of Community Living in DHHS, due to legislation passed last year. The Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act (WIOA) also reauthorized the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 and the Rehabilitation Act through 2020. More information


NIDRR adds letters to its acronym

The National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) is now the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR). NIDILRR is also now a part of the Administration of Community Living (ACL) in the Dept. of Health and Human Services, like the AT Act Programs.


RESNA's Government Affairs Committee is chaired by Nathan Moon. See the Government Relations webpage for more information, including a recent letter on Speech-Generating Devices and an update on the CRPD Treaty. 


Member News

RESNA member highlighted in media for "Creating AT in Minutes" workshop

Therese Willkomm, PhD, a nationally-known occupational therapist from New Hampshire, was the subject of a recent article in the Honolulu Star Advertiser. The local story was picked up by Disability Scoop, the nation's largest news organization devoted to covering developmental disabilities. Therese will be offering her workshop at RESNA 2015, and is also the presenter of an upcoming webinar on April 20 called "Rapid, Low Cost, Fabrication of Assistive Technology Solutions." Read the article


DIY resource article now available on website

RESNA member Alexandra Enders wrote an article for the RESNA website called "Looking for a good DIY AT design idea?" The article suggests resources and provides links to websites devoted to DIY (Do-It-Yourself) design. "There are many reasons why disability related material needs to incorporated into mainstream DIY/How To media," writes Enders. "If it isn't, then disability related ideas will always remain separate, outside, and 'special.'" Read the article


Have news to share? Send your item to Andrea Van Hook, RESNA's Communications & Marketing Manager.


March Webinars
All webinars are $28 for RESNA members, $40 for non-members, unless otherwise indicated. RESNA is authorized to offer 0.1 CEUs per webinar.

For the full calendar, visit the Webinars section on the website.  

Resources on the website
The RESNA website offers a wealth of information. Check out the Knowledge Center section for these and other resources.
  • Position papers and provision guides: RESNA publishes position papers summarizing evidence and expert advice on specific AT devices, service delivery, and evaluation. RESNA also offers a Wheelchair Service Provision Guide and other publications that are helpful for use with funders and policymakers. All papers and guides are offered as free PDF downloads. Follow this link.  
  • RESNA's Research Guidelines: the Research Committee recently published "RESNA's Guidelines and Priorities for Assistive Technology and Rehabilitation Research," which are intended for the research community and related stakeholders. Download the guidelines.  
  • New mobile app for complex rehab technology available for free: the new CRT Catalog App, produced by medMark Consultants, Inc., features complex rehab technology resources and information for ATPs and other professionals to use while on the go, working in the field with clients. RESNA is a sponsor of the app. Click here to access.
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.