I’m not sure about your summer plans but it seems like the month of June flew for me. I wanted to take a minute and give you an update on what is happening with the association. Those of you that attended NATA this past month in Indianapolis know that the National Athletic Training Athletic Association is a strong organization with approximately 32,000 members. They have broken the international barrier by partnering with the JATO. They continue to fight for Athletic Trainers in all areas of the profession.
As you may be aware the National Office is pushing several fronts but the two main ones that stick out to me are the Safe Sports School and NPI contest.
I am proud to announce that Yukon High School and Union High School where the first two schools in our District to apply and receive the Safe Sports School Award. Both Leander Walker, ATC and Dan Newman, ATC have special plans to announce to the public their well deserved awards. Please watch for further details.
130 out of 363 State of Oklahoma Athletic Trainers are being counted by the Federal Government as an Athletic Trainer. This is 36% of our certified membership. I would encourage you to go to National Plan & Provider Enumeration System and apply for your own NPI number. If you have questions the NATA has a whole page to explain the hows and whys. If you think you have an NPI I would also encourage you to review its status. I was under the impression that I had mine but under further investigation I was classified in the wrong category.
At the district level a few things came out of the mid year meeting. First, there was a 6 position changes to the 10 person board. Although a few served on the board before many of us were new. Gives way to a whole new dynamic of the board. I see great things coming for the membership. Second, I gave Ron Walker a heart attack asking for a full audit of the financial data of the District organization. I will let you know the results when they are made available to the board. Third, the district board sent over $10,000 in new scholarship and grant money to the finance committee for consideration. Fourth, the district is going to legally incorporate in the state of Oklahoma. It has been a 501c-3 in the eyes of the IRS but has never incorporated. Finally, we have a conference call set for the end of July. I will keep everyone notified what develops.
On the state level, I wish I could say everything was done but as you may be aware we all do other jobs and have families. That being said I think we have made some progress. The Governmental affairs(GAC) met the first part of June and discussed the up coming legislative sessions and what is the most important to the Oklahoma Athletic Trainers Association. We came up with two main issues we would like to address. First, the concussion law asking for more emphasis placed on the cases where the law is not being followed and we would still like to address youth sports in some way with this legislation. Second, we would like to ask the legislation to look at ways to increase the access to Athletic Trainers in high schools. According to the Korey Stringer Institute the state of Oklahoma is dead last in access to athletic trainers in the secondary schools. We will need outside organizations to buy into both of these goals. So if you have a relationship that could help with either initiative please let me know. The GAC is currently putting together a survey for the secondary school ATs across the state. Please look for further information by the end of the month either from me or Darren Lunow . We are also working towards applying for a discretionary grant to help with or legislative efforts.
I have scheduled or will soon be scheduling meetings with the other committees. In the summer months scheduling around everyone’s vacation can be difficult. I respect that.
Finally, I spent a lot of time in Indianapolis listening to members of the state of Oklahoma. I was delighted to hear their praises but also respected their concerns. I continue to gain great insight into the workings of the five organizations that help facilitate Athletic Training in Oklahoma(OATA, MAATA, NATA, BOC, CAATE). I would encourage you that if you have questions, concerns or ideas to please contact me. I would only ask that if you have a complaint; to come with a possible solution.
Until next month.
CJ Fedor, MEd, ATC, LAT
Oklahoma Athletic Trainers Association