NATA Beat: Summer Advocacy Updates

June 11, 2024 by Beth Sitzler
NATA Beat Your finder on the pulse of athletic training advocacy

Every day, NATA and the NATA Government Affairs Department are working on behalf of the athletic training profession. With staff members experienced in all aspects of the legislative process, the NATA Government Affairs Department is the sole department focused on advocacy for the profession. NATA’s goal is to ensure that all ATs can work to the fullest extent of their education and skill set. These bipartisan efforts consist of five key areas: state legislation, federal legislation, regulatory, reimbursement and NATAPAC.

The new quarterly eblast, NATA Beat, is dedicated to these government affairs efforts, ensuring members have the latest insight into the work being done to advocate for the profession. Accompanying NATA Beat, NATA Now will provide further highlights each quarter in a quick, easy-to-digest format.

Members are encouraged to visit the Advocacy section of the NATA website for further information, exclusive member-only resources and to get involved.

Those attending the 75th NATA Clinical Symposia & AT Expo will have the opportunity to learn more about NATA’s advocacy endeavors during the Daily Opening Session at 8 a.m. June 27 and in the Level Up! Theatre, where two advocacy related presentations will be held. Attendees can also connect with staff by visiting the NATA Government Affairs Booth in NATA Connect. Learn more about other ways to advocate during NATA 2024


State Legislation

  • On average, there are 3.1 million words per day introduced in state sessions. NATA is sorting through all of those words to make certain that our members are aware of what is happening to impact their ability to practice.
  • NATA is currently tracking a total of 109 bills. Of those, 24 have passed and been signed into law, and 54 are still making their way through the legislative process.
  • NATA continues to make monumental strides in state policy. NATA applies countless hours to educating legislators, governors, regulatory authorities and other key stakeholders on the critical role ATs play in health care. NATA’s top priorities remain your ability to work to the fullest extent of your education and training, with access to the necessary supplies and equipment need to succeed, in workplaces that value proper working conditions and appropriate compensation.
  • NATA is a sponsor of the Team Up for Sports Safety Initiative to promote regulatory and legislative changes to promote athlete safety. TUFFS works with state stakeholders to promote these efforts. So far this year, TUFSS meetings have been held in North Carolina, North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Kentucky, Vermont, Mississippi and Alabama.
  • Licenses are being issued in South Carolina. Read more about South Carolina’s path to licensure in the October 2023 NATA News. Congratulations again on this monumental change!


Federal Legislation

  • More than 15,000 bills have been introduced during the 118th Congress.
  • More than 9,950 bills in the House and more than 5,100 bills in the Senate.
  • Congress has passed 47 bills that have become law.
  • NATA is actively tracking more than 100 different House and Senate bills.
  • NATA has endorsed more than 12 bills in the 118th Congress
  • NATA has covered over 44 Congressional hearings and committee markups.
  • In total, 1,490 of the bills introduced pertained to health care.
    • 960 health bills in the House and 530 in the Senate
    • 12 House health bills and 3 Senate health bills passed out of committee
    • 16 health bills passed in the House and 3 passed in the Senate
    • 1 health bill signed into law
  • Federal appropriations remains the top priority heading into the July 4 recess.
  • Immigration/border enforcement is another top issue.
  • National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) legislation is working through the legislative process.
    • Recognition of ATs by Tricare through NDAA remains one of our top priorities as the Department of Defense hires additional ATs.
  • There is real interest by both House and Senate to consider name, image and likeness legislation. Many of the current options have a health care component.



  • The clock is ticking on the Biden Administration’s 2024 policy priorities.
  • NATA created the new DOL Overtime Rule Fact Sheet as a resource for members.
  • NATA is proactively reaching out to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration regarding ATs in the workplace
  • NATA created the Occupational Heat Task Force in partnership with the Korey Stringer Institute. The task force will meet in the fall to develop new resources.
  • NATA participated in the Department of the Army’s Health and Holistic Fitness Symposium, advocating for ATs in this rapidly growing employment setting.
  • NATA is proactively reaching out to the Bureau of Labor Statistics regarding its data and  salaries of athletic trainers.



  • From Jan. 1-April 30, 80 meetings and encounters have taken place with state associations, employers, athletic training education programs and payors.
  • Since 2018, more than 1,450 meetings and encounters have taken place.
  • NATA has confirmed more than 275 payors who have recognized and reimbursed for medically necessary physical medicine and rehabilitation services delivered by athletic trainers. The total payor count is certainly an under-representation as all commercial and workers’ compensation payors can’t accurately be counted.
  • This past quarter, formal recognition has been secured for Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Virginia adding an additional payor in the state.
  • The Bureau of Workers Compensation in Florida and Ohio currently recognize athletic trainers as providers. This means that all state workers’ compensation insurers must recognize athletic trainers.
  • NATA is in the final legal stages of securing a data sharing agreement with a large academic institution that contains 10 years of data utilizing ATs as autonomous billable providers working under referral in an outpatient rehabilitation setting. There will be more than 6,500 unique patients cared for by ATs in this data set. The data will be used to publish an important descriptive manuscript and payor-cost outcome, peer-reviewed manuscript.
  • Updated the Coding Overview and Commonly Used Codes Document. A new document addressing Medical Necessity and Athletic Training is in final review.
  • The NATA Third Party Reimbursement Bootcamp is available to all state associations and has been delivered to 13 states so far.
  • NATA is moving forward with options and planning for a 2025 National Reimbursement Workshop.



  • The NATA Political Action Committee remains active heading into the election season.
  • Total contributions for 2023 was $64,838
    • 2022 total was $56,167, meaning there was a $8,671 increase year over year.
  • Two biggest fundraisers in 2023:
    • Sweepstake raised $10,140
    • NATAPAC Breakfast raised $9,650
  • Total number of contributions in 2023: 2,270
  • Total number of members who contributed in 2023: 917
  • Highest contributing states:
    1. Florida
    2. Texas
    3. California
  • Highest contributing districts:
    • District Nine
    • District Five
    • District Six
  • We appreciate your continued commitment to the NATAPAC.
  • These funds allow us to support and build relationships with our lead advocates across both the House and Senate.
  • It’s important for NATA to work toward electing more members of Congress who understand and support the athletic training profession.
  • In total, 34 members of Congress won’t seek reelection in 2024.
    • 27 House members have announced they are retiring  (12 Democrats and 15 Republicans)
    • 7 Senators are retiring (5 Democrats, 1 Independent and 1 Republican)
  • With the presidential election happening this year, Congress will soon focus more on the election season and campaigning.
  • NATA convention attendees will have several opportunities to connect with NATAPAC during NATA 2024:
    • Attend the newly renamed Chuck Kimmel Memorial NATAPAC Lunch at noon June 27. This year’s keynote is NATA Hall of Fame member and former District Nine Director Marisa Brunett, MS, LAT, ATC. Tickets are $50 and going quickly. Tickets must be purchased in advance.
    • Stop by the NATAPAC Booth in NATA Connect and visit with the NATAPAC Board of Directors to learn more and donate.
    • Meet incoming NATAPAC Chair Karen Fennell, MS, LAT, ATC.


Members who are looking for insight into NATA’s international resources and information can visit the International section of the NATA website.