Premier Prosthetic865-474-7096

Help Provide Local, Life-Changing Prosthetic and Orthotic Care Through So Every BODY Can Move

Today, due to a lack of insurance coverage, thousands of children and adults with limb loss and limb difference are unable to afford and access life-changing prosthetic and orthotic care that helps them be physically active. We recently sat down with Prosthetist Hannah Howington, CPO, of Premier Surgical Prosthetic Center in Knoxville, to discuss a grassroots effort that is looking to change this through state-by-state legislative action that ensures access to this medically necessary care.

What is So Every BODY Can Move and how did you get involved? 

So Every BODY Can Move is an initiative that believes medicine and physical activity is a right, not a privilege. The movement started out directed towards helping children get activity-specific prosthetic and orthotic devices so that they could play sports and be physically active. These types of devices are not currently not covered by insurance. That got a lot of traction, and we widened our scope to include adults and anybody who uses a prosthetic or orthotic device. I got involved when I was living in southern Indiana before I came to Knoxville, and I started working with the Tennessee chapter once I moved here. 

Today, much of the initiative’s focus is advocacy and legislation. Unfortunately, state, federal, and private health plans still routinely deny access to prostheses and orthoses necessary for physical activity, sport, and exercise as “not medically necessary.” So Every BODY Can Move is disrupting this healthcare inequity by mobilizing grassroots advocates to champion local, state-by-state legislative change. Our goal is to create coverage for this medically necessary prosthetic and orthotic care in 28 states by the 2028 Los Angeles Paralympics, so we can then pursue federal reform. 

How does that cause translate locally, and how are Tennesseans impacted? 

Right now, in Tennessee, insurance will only pay for a prosthetic device once every 3 to 5 years. The same is true for bracing and orthotic devices. Our goal here is to require insurance companies to pay for patients to have more than one device at a time if they need it for a specific activity. Individuals often require different prosthetic devices for different purposes, not just for recreation, but also for hygienic purposes such as showering. 

We recently had bills in the Tennessee legislature to address this need, HB1992 and SB2010. Unfortunately, HB1992 was taken off notice on March 19th. So, now our focus is to raise more awareness of this issue and to get more people and other associations involved in supporting this cause. The more involvement we have, the greater our chances of getting this legislation back on the floor and passed next year.    

What are you doing to raise awareness? 

We’re working hard to make this issue more visible on many fronts. We have an open house at Premier Prosthetics coming up on June 11 from 4:30pm – 6:30pm, and we’re going to be using that as a way to help raise awareness. Our open house is an opportunity for our patients to come and meet each other in a less formal environment and bring up any concerns that they’re having with their prosthesis. We are going to also use the event as a way to raise some awareness for this movement.

What else can people do if they want to get involved? 

If people are able, we are accepting donations to assist with our lobbying efforts to help get this bill passed. The easiest way to give right now is to write a check to Tennessee Society of Orthotics & Prosthetics (TSOP) and in the memo write TN SECM. You can mail the check to:

Hannah Howington, TSOP Treasurer
Premier Surgical Prosthetic Center
6408 Papermill Dr., Suite 100
Knoxville, TN, 37919

Additionally, So Every Body Can Move is hosting the 28×28 Mobility Challenge from July 1-28. This is a fundraising opportunity and a challenge to be active for 28 minutes a day for 28 days as a call out to our goal of 28 states passing this legislation by the 2028 Paralympic games. Please reach out to us if you are interested in joining our team! 

You can also sign up to get involved with So Every BODY Can Move on their website. If you are a patient interested in sharing your story regarding being denied access to necessary care, please reach out. Outside of that, just talking about it and sharing information on social media to make people aware that this is an issue is incredibly helpful.  Most average people wouldn’t think about people with prosthetic legs or arms not having affordable access to necessary devices. It’s not something you come across every day. So just being aware of it, talking about it, and advocating for it goes a long way. 


Learn more about So Every BODY Can Move on their website

If you are unhappy with the fit of your current prosthesis,  Premier Surgical Prosthetic in Knoxville offers free consultations. Call (865) 474-7096 or schedule an appointment online.

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