COLUMBUS—State Senator Rob McColley (R-Napoleon) today joined Lt. Governor Jon Husted to announced a legislative initiative aimed at fostering stronger innovation and development in prosthetics in Ohio.
Currently, Ohio law requires prosthesis developers to obtain a license from the Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Athletic Trainers (OTPTAT) Board – a license that can be granted only after the applicant obtains a bachelor’s degree, completes a prosthetics residency program, works a minimum of eight months under the supervision of a licensed prosthetist, successfully completes an examination, and pays a fee. That process for obtaining a license could take a person more than six years.
“This is a simple fix that has the potential to help people everywhere,” said McColley. “By paving the way for innovation in Ohio, we open the door to solve problems and improve the lives of people everywhere, which is how we want Ohio to be known.”
The Common Sense Initiative (CSI), developed language that will give flexibility to the OTPTAT Board to give permission to those who research and develop prosthetics using 3-D printing technology.
“Laws and regulations need to keep people safe and healthy, but we can’t have our regulations ever standing in the way of innovation,” said Husted. “We need to knock down barriers that prevent people from inventing, starting businesses, and growing our economy in Ohio and position our state as the most innovative, creative state in the Midwest.”
The initiative is a result of learning from Ohio resident, Aaron Westbrook, who founded the non-profit organization, Form 5 Prosthetics Inc. The organization develops task-specific prosthetic limbs for those who need them, free of charge.
Westbook joined McColley and Husted at today's press conference, which you can watch here.
“The laws that we need should foster innovation and make prosthetics accessible. This law, in its current form, could prevent our work to provide better prosthetics," said Westbrook. "I stand by the commitment I made at 14 years old to advance prosthetics and serve those in need. I believe that once this law is amended, more advancements in and out of the prosthetic industry will spark ingenuity, advocacy, and research to enhance the lives of many.”