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*New -  Joint effort with the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) and the Department of Elder affairs in a home modification program.
Eligible providers will have 60 days to complete the application for funding. Providers must apply by February 14, 2022. Read more

OT Scope of Practice Update


Florida OTs now have an updated Scope of Practice for the first time in over 20 years to better define ALL we do!! For the purpose of improving patient access to OTs and support our state OT private practitioners (and all OTs/COTAs)!

  • Mental health interventions
  • Health management and Wellness
  • Updated definitions of OT that model our  framework
  • Laws regarding higher education and our doctorate/capstone
  • ADLs!! (Helloooooo?!)
  • And so much more!!

Thank you so much to the support of our FOTA members, Johnston and Stewart lobbying firm Anita Berry, and all of the OT leaders and students that helped along the way! This was a 6 year project now complete! Much more to do moving forward, but this change lays down the foundation to support our upcoming efforts.  

See our Bill

DOH Guidelines: April 29, 2022

As you may know, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) issued a press release last week containing guidelines related to the Treatment of Gender Dysphoria for Children and Adolescents. Read more



Joint effort with the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) and the Department of Elder affairs in a home modification program.
Eligible providers will have 60 days to complete the application for funding. Providers must apply by February 14, 2022.

FOTA's Government Affairs is proud to announce a joint effort with the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) and the Department of Elder affairs in a home modification program designed to enable older adults in Florida to remain in their homes, rather than move to nursing homes or other assisted care facilities. The goal of this program is to enable low-income elderly persons to remain in their homes through low-cost, low barrier, high impact home modifications to reduce older adults’ risk of falling, improve general safety, increase accessibility, and to improve their functional abilities in their home. The program requires that an occupational therapist play the lead role for the home modification team. 
Details are limited at this time. We anticipate the cap for home mods will be around $5,000 for each client, and are still working on identifying an appropriate reimbursement rate for clinician. The initiative will occur throughout Florida, so where ever you are, you are needed. We are encouraging OTs to register with AHCA as Medicaid providers to shore up our resources in prep for this influx of around $127 million dollars earmarked for this initiative. Please read more here:
Your Government Affairs Team"   

November 2021 Hill Day: Join us on November 2, 2021 in Tallahassee 

Hill Day Nov 2Greetings from the Hill. The 2021-2022 Legislative Session quickly approaches. Your FOTA Government Affairs committee has secured a spot for Hill Day in the recently reopened Florida Capital building.  On November 2nd, 2021 we will have our first FOTA Hill Day of the season. We will be meeting with legislators, government representatives, and relevant stakeholders en route to updating the Florida OT Scope of Practice for the first time in over 20 years. As of today, we are House Bill 543 (HB543), though this may change soon. We will keep you updated.

Meet us Nov. 2, on the second-floor rotunda of the new Capitol building between 8a-3p to support your profession, learn about the Capitol, and collect some OT swag to rep your team. Questions? Contact us at [email protected]. We look forward to advocating with you.

Please let us know you are attending, so we can keep you updated with details of the day.

Click the graphic or here to sign up.

Your Government Affairs Team

Read the latest bill tracking and legislative reports below!!

Order your  I'M FOR OT TShirt for this event

- Still time to order and receive it if you order by Sunday, Oct. 24!






2021 Legislative Updates and Bill Tracking 

2021 Legislative Session Report    |    2021 Bill Tracking Report
Occupational Therapy Coverage for State Employees

(SB 2500) – Approved by the Governor

Every Legislative Session, we must work to include in the budget and protect occupational therapy coverage for state employees. Entering budget conference, we were well positioned with language protecting coverage included in both the House and Senate proposed budgets. For the fifth year in a row, we successfully worked with the House and Senate budget chairs, to include language providing this benefit to state employees in the final budget as passed. - Read Full Report

HILL DAY April 2021

The Florida Occupational Therapy Association (FOTA) is proud to continue its service to members and consumers of OT during the 2021 Florida Legislative Session.  Thus far we have spoken to at least eight different legislators directly involved in the examination and vetting of our proposed updates to the Occupational Therapy Scope of Practice (Scope). Your FOTA representatives have also met with other relevant stakeholders such as The Florida Board of OT and the Florida Department of Health to solicit feedback and support of these essential updates to our Scope.

Now it’s your turn!

Your FOTA Government Affairs (GA) team is inviting all members to review the proposed draft (available here: ) and contact their legislative representatives. We believe that awareness is key to achieving FOTA’s mission of supporting members and consumers both now and in the future. Easy ways we can achieve this awareness might include:

  • Writing a letter to your Representative. 
  • Post a blog in support of updates on your site.
  • Create an assignment for your students to contact representatives.
  • Create an Instagram or Facebook post.
  • Hash Tag your support of House Bill HB543 and/or Senate Bill SB990.Like and share FOTA social media posts.
    • #ImforOT, #SupportHB543, #SupportSB990

To make it easy, here is guidance on crafting a letter to Senate Health Policy Committee members who are directly responsible for reviewing and deciding how our Bill should proceed. Filling in the information and emailing to a senator would take no time at all and is a strong indicator of support from our community.

On April 7th, 2021, at 7pm, we will be hosting an online discussion with the GA team to recap our efforts and to answer questions from membership. FOTA thrives on the involvement of its members and we look forward to your continued support.

Your Government Affairs Team  


  Senate Health Policy Committee :

Manny Diaz:  [email protected]
Jason Brodeur:  [email protected]
Ben Albritton:  [email protected]
Dennis Baxley [email protected]
AaronBean  [email protected]
Lauren Book  [email protected]
Janet Cruz  [email protected]
Gary Farmer, Jr.  [email protected]
IleanaGarcia  [email protected]
Shevrin ''Shev''Jones   [email protected]

 Legislative Reports & Hill Day Recaps: 


Government Affairs News:

A big thank you and shout out to Jian Jones Stewart, an OT professor and Fieldwork Coordinator at FAMU for testifying for the senate Committee meeting today at The Capitol. Here is what she said...

“My name is Jian Jones and I help transform lives as an Occupational Therapist. Occupational therapy helps individuals participate in meaningful activities independently. We evaluate and treat people from birth to the aging population in their ability to engage in everyday tasks such as bathing, dressing, grooming, and feeding. More complex skills in which we facilitate improvements include returning to work, engagement within the community, the ability to parent and addressing psychosocial needs for mental health. Occupational therapist view each individual as a WHOLE person using a holistic approach. As occupational therapist, we are asking the legislature to consider programs that encourage non-use of opioids such as occupational therapy. Why? Because OT’s change lives. We change lives by examining habits, behaviors and thoughts that revolve around drugs which leads to dependency. We change lives by working with the individual to create and implement a daily routine that provides meaning and joy WITHOUT the use of drugs. Any program or protocol addressing drug dependency must include evaluating and treating the WHOLE person AND the void a person leaves behind when the substance abuse is discontinued. OT’s change lives because we specialize in /nding voids and replacing said void with meaning, purpose and fulllment so that the WHOLE person can reengage into society in a productive way. Strategies for change include addressing ergonomics in the workplace that lead to pain, teaching energy conservation techniques, fatigue management, pain distraction techniques, establishing better sleep patterns , and using psychotherapeutic approaches for pain management. And because OT’s change lives using these strategies, we encourage the legislature to consider programs like occupational therapy that incorporate non-pharmacological treatment for opioid abuse. Thank y

 Occupational Therapist Tammy McKenzie Testifies on behalf of FOTA at the House Appropriations Committee met on January 22, 2018 to discuss HB 21 --Controlled Substances.

Tammy McKenzie, Florida Occupation Therapy Association, spoke to provide information. As an occupational therapist, it is their job to teach skills needed throughout life. When looking with their clients on how to do that, they have to provide meaning in life. When treating those that have/had an addiction, they can lose their way. They examine how these addictions can cause loss of identity and drive for independence success. These losses create increased dependency, which is a burden to our society, secondary to the burden of dependency to drug and alcohol. They encourage the legislature to include non-pharmaceutical treatments, such things as occupational therapy.

HB 21, Controlled Substances, by Representative Boyd

Bill Summary
“HB 21 limits the prescription for a Schedule II opioid to alleviate acute pain to a three-day supply, or a seven-day supply if deemed medically necessary by the prescriber. The bill requires Department of Health (DOH) to adopt rules establishing guidelines for prescribing controlled substances for acute pain, similar to those for chronic pain. The bill also requires a health care practitioner authorized to prescribe controlled substances to complete a board-approved 2-hour continuing education course on safely and effectively prescribing controlled substances, and to review a patient's PDMP history prior to prescribing or dispensing a controlled substance.”

Hill Day 2018 Slideshow



    A Legislative Achievement for Florida Occupational Therapists.   TALLAHASSEE – After more than 20 years of advocacy, State of Florida employees now can access occupational therapy services through the state group health insurance plan. The Florida Occupational Therapy Association (FOTA) led the efforts to include the added benefit for state employees in the 2017 General Appropriations Act passed by the Florida Legislature and signed by Gov. Rick Scott.  Read more....

About FOTA Government Affairs

We are closely watching for ways OT will both be impacted and for opportunities for OT to be included, perhaps in ways we have not been included in the past. While the ACA is a Federal program, FOTA is working closely with AOTA to follow the trends and keep you informed.

Government Affairs Co-Coordinators: to contact please email [email protected]

altSharon Rosenberg OTR/L, CHT Government Affairs Co-Coordinator: 

Sharon graduated in 2011 with her Master’s of Occupational Therapy and has worked in sub-acute rehab and outpatient hand therapy settings. She has been involved in Governmental Affairs with FOTA since 2014 and facilitated the hire of our current lobbying team who successfully past legislation to add OT as a benefit to the Florida Healthcare Plan. Sharon enjoys traveling with her husband and two young boys and advocating for OT in her role as Government Affairs co-coordinator.


Carlos Martoral Carlos C. Martoral OTD, JD Government Affairs Co-Coordinator



FOTA Lobbying Firm

At Johnston & Stewart Government Strategies, we have mastered the arena of Florida politics.
Every single move we make is strategic and backed by decades of experience.


What the FOTA Board Watches ALL the Time:

  •  BC/BS reimbursement for OT for state workers
  • Medicaid reimbursement
  • Opportunities to add OT as a recognized Mental Health Provider
  • Opportunities for inculsion ie: OT was there at the rules making table to get language re: OTA supervision in the Home Health Agency Rules
  • Monitor threats to our scope of practice by other professions


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