Remember the old saying "No News is Good News"? Well, we have nothing new to tell you... We await contact from the Sunset Commission appointed subcommittee in regards to modifications to the staff findings. We will let you all know more as we know it.
In the meantime...
I would like to thank each and every one of you who took the time to contact members of the Sunset Commission. It was your efforts that helped us get this far! I would also like to thank both the outgoing and incoming BOD's - we accomplished much in a very short time! Lastly, we all owe Eileen Scallon a hug and a thank you! She has diligently made sure that things were where they needed to be, whether that be signs for the demonstration or updates to the webpage. She's done that in addition to closing out the Annual Convention in San Antonio, and the regular business that goes on from day-to-day.
A closing thought...
We saw a pretty good surge in membership during the past month or so, pretty much related to the activities of the Sunset Commission. It's actually a shame that it takes something like this whole series of events to get folks off the fence. I've never questioned why I have to pay TSRC and/or AARC dues. It goes with the territory. Professionals pay dues to their Professional Societies. They do it joyfully. They do it by choice. They do it because they know their Society will do the right thing by them and for them. The TSRC and the AARC have both fought hard for all RCP's whether members or not. We will continue that fight. I would ask that if you haven't joined, examine your motives as to why you haven't. I don't buy into the "it's too expensive" argument. Where there's a will, there's a way. I don't buy into the "what have you done for me?" question either. That one is pretty obvious right about now...
Remember that this is the lull in the storm. There will be work to be done when the Legislature goes into session in the Spring. We will need letters, emails, phone calls, and office calls when the Legislature takes up the Sunset Commission's recommendations. So, for now, get rested! Get your co-worker to join BOTH the TSRC and the AARC. It's important that you be a member of both! TSRC is the AARC's Chartered Affiliate. We aren't in competition with each other, and we couldn't have gotten this far without both organizations. It will be the best investment you make for a long time to come! As always, feel free to contact me to discuss these or any other issues. Or contact me just to say "hi"!
On June 24, the Sunset Commission decided to establish a subcommittee to investigate further the deregulation. Yesterday, the TSRC, AARC and others, testified before the committee. The really good news is that the TSRC was asked to be a stakeholder in that subcommittee. This will help to insure that we continue to be heard as we work towards a positive resolution.
We wish to thank each of you who took the time to write/call/email your State Representatives. We could not have gotten this far without your help.
The TSRC is now asking everyone to take a step back as we work on our next plan of action. We have been asked by the Commission to pause our letter writing/calling/emailing campaign to allow their staff to work on the pending modifications. As usual, chek the webpage for further updates and guidance.
Thanks to the AARC for all their support. Click here to view there article: http://www.aarc.org/headlines/14/06/texas/
Senator Nelson has decided to appoint a subcommittee to review the Sunset Staff's recommendations on licensure! We will still testify to the Commission, but we will need your help again. More to follow! This is good news, believe it or not!
Respiratory Therapists have been pro-active in spreading the word and what better way than thru the News or Social Media. Television, Newspaper, and Facebook offer a quick way to inform the public. We wish to thank those who have gone the the "Extra Mile"
Gaylene Lee was able to get the following posted in the San Antonio News Express : http://www.mysanantonio.com/default/article/Deregulating-respiratory-care-a-risk-to-public-5565311.php
Also, in Houston Darby Cruz, Respiratory Manager at TIRR Memorial Herman helped assisted in getting this interview.
Also, Dallas/Ft Worth News Channel 8 interviewed President Mark Barch and Nicki Cope
On June 24th and 25th, we will gather at the State Capitol to show our opposition for the deregulation. If you would like to join us to "Say No". A location has been determined and information is as follows:
Rally will start at 9:00 AM both days. Parking location and Rally site are located on the instruction link below. Also, just in case you are interviewed by the press we have prepared statement guidelines that will help/guide you in your response.
Please allow enough time to park and walk to the Rally area (it could be up to a 10 minuted walk from the parking garage to rally area). Please dress appropriately-remember we are promoting our profession. Should you have any questions please contact either Gaylene Lee at or Chris Russian at
State Capitol Guide
The Sunset Commission will be meeting in the Capitol Extension. Location will be the Senate Finance Committee Room , Room E1.036. The physical address is 1400 Congress Avenue. Remember the Capitol is a big place so please allow yourself enough time to walk from the parking to the Extension Site.
As always, thanks for your support.
We wish to thank those of you who have taken the time to write/call/email their representative. Please note that the fight has just begun. The TSRC will continue to ask for your support throughout the next couple of months as we wait for a decision. In August, we may have to regroup and begin again. Remember, we have over 14,000 licensed respiratory therapist in Texas and that represents a lot of votes come election time.
Please send your emails or call your representative today! Remember the TSRC will be there on Tuesday June 23 and Wednesday, June 25th to fight for you and all Respiratory Therapists in Texas.
We wish to thank San Antonio News Channel 4 for investigating the Sunset Commision deregulation of RCPs.
The article and interview can be viewed here: Click Here
Special Thanks to Michael Dickmann and Gaylene Lee for taking their time to help spread the word.
All RCPs should take a moment to contact the Sunset Commission. Scroll down to read more and to find contact information for the Commission. We must all do are part ot protect the profession.
If you haven't written, called, or emailed Sunset Commission members yet, it's not too late! In order for your voice to be heard, you have to use it! Emails/Calls are the quickest way to be heard. We need your comments in by Thursday! We are gaining additional support, and I have heard that a number of practitioners plan to attend. That's great news! Please remember as you testify not to become repetitive, as you can lose your time. I cannot stress the importance of an organized response. We are in this for the long haul. Remember that even though we testify in June, we won't know anything else until August. We will have plenty to do during that time, so be prepared. Now is the time to answer the call! Consider joining TSRC if you're not a member. There is strength in numbers!
See You in Austin!
TSRC President Elect
The Sunset Commision has posted their agenda for the meeting on June 24-25th (Sunset Commission Agenda). At this point we need an extensive letter writing/ email campaign. We need every RCP in Texas to be pro-active in getting our message out. We have adjusted the templates to help make the process easier. We need to emphasis that it is not just RCPs that need to take action. Anyone you know can help-Doctors, Nurses, Patients, Friends and Family.
The Sunset Commission members can be viewed here https://www.sunset.texas.gov/
(You can click on each individual member for more information)
The Sunset Commission Report can be viewed here: May 2014 Sunset Advisory Staff Report
Click here for: Tips for scheduling and appointment with Legistators
Click here for sample letter for writing your Representative: Sample Template
Click here for tips on emailing your Texas representatives: Contact State Representive Instructions
Click here for a sample letter for students: Template for student letter
Click here for a sample letter for Physicians:Template for Physicians
Click here for a sample letter for Family and Friends:Template for Family and Friends
Please visit the website daily for updates.
Thanks for your support
Article from your president regarding the Texas Sunset Commission's recommendation to deregulate RCP in Texas:
First I want to say thank you and welcome to all the new members who have joined the TSRC in the last week or two. There is strength in numbers and you all have just helped make the TSRC stronger.
And to all of you who have been calling and emailing the TSRC office or individual TSRC Board members, thank you for your interest and concern in this matter.
The Executive Committee of the TSRC Board of Directors is comprised on the current president, current president-elect, current past president, current vice president, current Treasurer, current secretary and the senior delegate (Mark Barch, Russell Graham, Tony Flores, Tommy Rust, Shanna English, respectively - there is no secretary due to a resignation earlier this year and Terry Gilmore). We have been working feverishly on this issue along with the other TSRC Board members as well as with the AARC and I want to assure you all that we are on top of it, we have a plan and we are working our plan.
Many of you have asked if you could address the Commission on June 25th. The short answer is, anyone who wishes to can address the Commission but they must show up in person on June 24th and personally put their name on the roster to speak. However, as the TSRC we want to ensure that this is a very organized and very professional presentation. It would be counter productive to have a bunch of people getting up to speak who are all essentially saying the exact same thing - the Commission could then decide to halt the public speaking on this subject because no one is presenting anything new. That is a risk the TSRC Executive Board is not willing to take, so we are asking all of you to please curb your enthusiasm for the moment and let us handle this matter. The absolute best thing you can do right now is to contact your state representatives and let them know your views (be courteous and professional).
The Commission will not make a determination until around August. If the Commission does not make a determination in our favor then we will take the battle to the next level at that time, which will involve addressing the legislature. For the meeting on June 24-25th the TSRC will be sending 2 or 3 members of the Executive Committee to address the Commission. We do not feel it would be financially feasible to incur the expense for any other Board members to attend this particular meeting given that we have several large bills that we must pay for the Annual Meeting held this past May and we need to ensure we have the financial ability to fight a prolonged battle with the Legislature should the Commission not rule in our favor.
Now is not the time to panic. The TSRC, as always, has your back and we are on top of this and we have a plan to address this situation regardless of what the Commission decides in August. So stay focused, stay professional in your work place and in your community, continue to provide the best patient care possible, and continue to visit the TSRC website for updates and breaking news.