CMS moves toward telehealth for physical therapy, FCC announces telehealth initiative, new resources available for physical therapy educators, and more.
Latest Relief Package: Options for Small Businesses
Here's what the latest COVID-19 package offers to small businesses.
APTA Wants To Hear From You About Your COVID-19 Experiences
Are you on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic? APTA would like to hear from PTs, PTAs, and students about their experiences.
APTA House of Delegates Packet Posted
The online resource provides information on 41 motions, including seven proposed amendments to the APTA bylaws.
APTA Wants Your Physical Activity Videos
A new project will collect and share videos that help Americans remain physically active during social distancing and isolation.
New CMS Rule Includes Therapy Codes in Telehealth, Stops Short of Allowing PTs to Conduct Telehealth Services
The temporary changes give a nod to the potential for true telehealth by PTs even though regulatory barriers still prevent that from happening. Could it be a sign of more to come?
Tell Congress: Improvements in Telehealth, Reimbursement Should be Part of Pandemic Response
Now's the time to make the case for the profession's role in telehealth services and the need for easing reimbursement cuts as a way to help address the pandemic.
Where Things Stand: COVID-19 and Practice Guidance
The latest recommended practice guidance related to COVID-19.
Responding to Patient Concerns About Workers' Comp During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Some patients may be understandably concerned about losing WC benefits if they choose to reduce travel during the national health emergency.
Coronavirus Update: March 30, 2020
Practice guidance for pediatric physical therapy, a new volunteer resource, accelerated Medicare payments, and more.
APTA Offers General and Pediatric-Focused COVID-19 Guidance for PTs, PTAs, Students
Topics addressed in the new resources include when a PT should tell patients to cancel an outpatient visit and factors to consider when providing remote school-based services as part of an IEP.
New COVID-19 Volunteer Resource Connects PTs, PTAs, Students With Facilities in Need
APTA's new service allows facilities to share their needs and creates matches with volunteers able to provide key services.
Coronavirus Update: March 27, 2020
A Medicare payment increase, PT telehealth for UnitedHealthcare, APTA tracks telehealth payment changes, and more.
COVID Stimulus Package Includes Payment Increase, Opens Possibility of Increased Telehealth, More
The stimulus package contains provisions of particular interest to PTs, PTAs, physical therapy students, and patients.
Charts from APTA Track Payer, Government PT Telehealth Policies
Keep track of evolving payer and regulatory changes related to telehealth and physical therapy.
UnitedHealthcare Allows Telehealth for Physical Therapy
Beginning immediately, the payer will reimburse physical therapy delivered via telehealth services.
Coronavirus Update: March 26, 2020
New PT practice guidelines for COVID patients in acute hospitals, Cigna opens up telehealth for PTs, a call for postacute care COVID preparedness, and more.
Practice Guidelines Emerge for Physical Therapy and COVID-19 in Acute Hospital Setting
The guidelines stress the use of well-trained, experienced PTs and careful screening of patients.
Coronavirus Update: March 25, 2020
Congress passes a COVID-19 stimulus package with limited relief for PTs and PTAs, UnitedHealthcare allows e-visits, HPA shares an interoperability opportunity, and more.
APTA Components Step up to the COVID-19 Challenge With Ever-Growing Resources
"We are ...doing our best to make a positive impact on society in a moment in time when there are no easy solutions."
HHS to States: Ease State Laws and Regs Now
Licensure and telemedicine requuirements need to be eased, says HHS.
Coronavirus Update: March 24, 2020
APTA joins effort for stepped up NPE response by Congress; new template letter for telehealth; wound care considered "essential," and more.
APTA Joins Push for PPE, More Consistent Use Recommendations
The letter isn't just about supply shortages. It also emphasizes the importance of consistent science-based guidance, and taking steps to make sure PPE shortages don't occur in the future.
Coronavirus Update: March 23, 2020
Tips on what to ask about telehealth; guidance on paid leave law; coronavirus "self-checker"; CMS enrollment relief, and more.
Asking the Right Questions About Telehealth
Keep your assumptions in check.
Coronavirus Update, March 22, 2020: CMS and US Treasury Announce Relief Measures for Clinicians
Employer reimbursement for paid sick leave and a delay on MIPS reporting deadlines.
Coronavirus Update: March 20, 2020
APTA's President issues a statement, updated e-visit Q&A and webinar recording available, telehealth grassroots advocacy, and more.
Coronavirus Update: March 19, 2020
The latest coronavirus news: LTC guidelines, Aetna and telehealth, CMS on elective surgeries, and more.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, March 2020
We could all use a little Good Stuff about now: positive media coverage of members and the profession.
Coronavirus Update: March 18, 2020
The latest coronavirus news: E-visits, APTA online town hall, CDC guidance on return-to-work, and more.
Furnishing and Billing E-Visits: Addressing Your Questions
News of an e-visit waiver at CMS has prompted lots of questions. Here are answers to some of the most pressing ones.
CMS Moves to Allow Digital Communications by PTs
CMS is opening the possibility of "e-visits" by PTs, OTs, and SLPs, among others.
Coronavirus Update: March 17, 2020
The latest coronavirus news: APTA statement, PTs and telehealth, recent media reports, and more.
National Health Emergency Triggers CMS Waivers for Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP
The waivers touch on a wide range of requirements and settings. Here are some important elements you need to know.
PTAs Will be Authorized TRICARE Providers Beginning Mid-April
The TRICARE system's approach to PTAs is largerly similar to Medicare's.
Telehealth in Physical Therapy in Light of COVID-19
The coronavirus pandemic demands that health care providers rethink how they deliver care in ways that reduce risk of further spreading infection. The use of telehealth is one approach that can help keep both patients and providers.
CDC: Fall-Related TBI Death Jumped 17% 2008-2017
Mortality rates for residents of rural areas and adults 75 and older showed the largest increases.
Alert: Suspect 'Checks' Are Making the Rounds
Did you recently receive what appears to be a check for payment of services from a national proprietary provider network? It may not be what you think.
CMS Issues COVID-19 Guidance on Infection Control, Protective Equipment
Links to recent CMS guidance for SNFs, home health, hospice, and more.
Study: Even in After-Hours Settings, Seeing a PT First for MSK Conditions in the Emergency Department Saves Time, Reduces Opioid Prescriptions
Most of the PTs didn't have experience in ED settings.
New Rules Aim to Ease Patient Access to Their Health Data
Two related rules touch health IT vendors, health care facilities, and providers — and come down hard on "information blocking" that prevents patients from accessing their electronic health records.
Advisory: PTs, Telehealth, and the Coronavirus
Be sure you understand what Medicare has to say about PTs and telehealth, and check directly with commercial payers.
APTA Launches Fundraising Campaign for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
The first 10,000 people to contribute at least $10 will have their name included on the Community Wall at APTA’s new headquarters.
TRICARE Balks at Covering TENS and Dry Needling
The Defense Health Agency says both treatments are "unproven."
Coronavirus Reports: What We Know, and What We Don't
At this time all APTA national events are continuing as scheduled.
A Space Odyssey: Architects and PTs Talk Clinic Design
Whether it's a huge university facility or a renovated strip mall store, clinic design considerations need to be weighed carefully.
PT, PTA Education Leadership Institute Accepting Applications for Award-Winning Program
Honing leadership skills and advancing the profession.
CMS Resolves Compact Snag, Says Privilege Satisfies Requirements
The physical therapy compact just got a big nod from CMS.
'100 Milestones of Physical Therapy' Celebrates the Profession's Proud History
Get reacquainted with the profession's history.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, February 2020
Better posture, virtual reality, and Harvey Weinstein's walker.
Fall-Related Injury and Death Remain Global Problems
What's going on in Central Europe?
2020 APTA Federal Advocacy Forum Will Feature Impressive Line-up; Registration Closes March 16
The advocacy trip to Capitol Hill isn't the only thing happening at the Federal Advocacy Forum: This year's speakers will get you informed and inspired.
Updated Guideline for Management of Hand, Hip, Knee OA Strongly Recommends Exercise-Based Approaches
Weight loss programs, tai chi, and "self-management programs" also received positive recommendations.
APTA Volunteer Opportunities Available
Needed areas include ethics and judicial, finance and audit, public policy and advocacy, and several awards subcommittees.
CMS Coding Reversal Update: Providers Can Start Checking in With MACs
Bottom line: check with your MAC.
Lawmakers Want Answers From CMS on Planned 2021 Payment Cuts
House members want CMS to explain its methodology in deciding how much it would reduce payments, and whether it considered how the cuts would impact care.
PTJ: New CPG Supported by APTA Provides Guidance on PT Treatment of Individuals With Heart Failure
The CPG inclueds nine action statements and two clinical alogrithms.
Mining Data to Shape Practice
PT in Motion magazine looks at how yesterday's patient data helps inform today's treatment decisions.
PTAs, Direct Access, Plans of Care, and More: APTA and Components Press for Changes
If CMS really wants to put "patients over paperwork" in physical therapy, it could start by allowing PTAs to provide maintenance care across settings and easing PTA supervision requirements,
CMS Coding Reversal Will Apply to Claims Made Beginning January 1, 2020
We now know a little more about how CMS intends to walk back coding edits that caused an uproar in the physical therapy community.
Study: Home Health Physical Therapy Improves Abilities of Individuals With Dementia
Researchers say home health physical therapy can make a significant difference in the lives of people with dementia.
5 Things PTs and PTAs Need to Know About Naloxone
APTA’s official position is that naloxone should be accessible where PT services are provided.
Payment Win: CMS Reverses Most of Its Damaging Coding Edits, More Details to Come
CMS has reversed its decision to prohibit payment for certain activity codes if they're used on the same day as evaluation codes.
What's Happening at the State Level: Hot Issues for 2020
Direct access, telehealth, dry needling, imaging, and more: lots of issues are bubbling up in state legislatures.
Humana Adopts PTA Coding System, Anticipates Payment Differential Beginning in 2022
Humana's policy adopts a CMS rule change aimed at creating an 85% payment differential for services provided "in whole or part" by a PTA or OTA.
APTA's Physical Therapy Outcomes Registry Again Receives QCDR Designation for MIPS Reporting, Adds New Measures
"Participants have found that registry data has opened their eyes to areas for improvement, and even informed changes to the way they deliver care."
2020 Federal Advocacy Forum Coming March 29; Registration Open Through March 16
The latest on legislative and regulatory issues affecting the profession, and an opportunity to apply what you've learned during a visit to Capitol Hill.
NCCI Code Edits: Your Questions Answered
We're fighting to change recent coding edits. In the meantime, here are answers to common questions about how the new restrictions work.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, January 2020
Members are making their marks in all kinds of ways.
We Have a Winner: ONE by ONE Member Recruitment Effort's Prizewinner List Continues to Grow
Don't miss a chance to win free APTA membership.
APTA CEO Moore Joins Amputee Coalition Board
Moore will join 11 other board members to shape advocacy on behalf of Americans with limb loss and limb difference.
Paul Rockar Named Foundation President
Rockar is a former APTA president.
Separate Studies, Similar Conclusions: Bundling for Knee, Hip Replacement Seems to be Working
Are those bundled care payment models working?
New APTA-Supported CPG Looks at Best Ways to Improve Walking Speed, Distance for Individuals After Stroke, Brain Injury, and Incomplete SCI
The new CPG evaluates the evidence for what works - and what doesn't - among interventions that increase walking speed and distance.
Time to Act: Surprise Coding Complication Ignores Realities of PT Practice and Must be Changed
Make your voice heard on a code change that ignores accepted PT practice.
Small-Scale Study Finds Large-Scale Debt Among Recent DPT Grads
In this review The Debt Burden of Entry Level Physical Therapists (manuscript e published ahead of print in PTJ, December 2019) The message It's a limited study—based on a small number of respondents who are early
Physician Owned? Corporate? Independent? Panel Event to Focus on PT Models of Practice
Few would argue that health care in the United States has experienced significant change over the past few years—but do those changes require a new look at practice models for physical therapists (PTs)? That's the question at the heart of an event cosponsored by APTA and Arcadia University set for the evening of January 9, 6:00 pm–9:00 pm ET.
2020 Physician Fee Schedule Calculator Now Available
The latest fee schedule calculator is ready for use.
APTA Helps You Prepare for Medicare in 2020, Fight Proposed 2021 Cuts
Don't let 2020 take you by surprise.
2020 Slate of Candidates Posted
The 2020 Slate of Candidates for APTA national office is now posted on the APTA website. Candidate statements and biographical information will be posted on March 16, 2020. Elections for national office will be held at the
APTA, AOTA, ASHA: New Home Health Payment System No Reason to Compromise Care
"Unnecessary staffing changes could affect the clinicians' practice patterns...ultimately damaging the quality of care provided by home health agencies."
Public Awareness for Physical Therapy Is Ready to Rock Times Square
Researchers say the trends are "counterintuitive."
APTA's TKA Guidelines: Your Comments Needed by January 3
Get your comments in by January 3.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, December 2019
A former Denver Bronco pursuing his DPT, adaptive school lunchrooms, swimming with a sprain, and more.
Foundation Grants Focus on ICU Survivors, Exercise Effects on Diabetes, Blood Flow Restriction, and More
APTA is the Foundation's Pinnacle Partner in Research and has been a leading donor in funding major research initiatives.
The New Postacute Care Payment Systems: 5 Tips to Help You Find Your Way
The reality is that PDPM and PDGM are here, and PTs and PTAs must now learn how to navigate the changed landscapes—and help dispel misunderstandings.
From Choose PT.com and Move Forward Radio: 'Dancing With the Stars' Dancer and the Show's PT Talk About Keeping the Cast in Shape
"A lot of the accolades we get are because of [Gina Minchella,the show's physical therapist]."
Study: Among Individuals Who Qualify for Medicare Due to Disability, Opioid Overdose Deaths Nearly 5 Times Higher Than Total US Rate
Among Medicare beneficiaries, enrollees younger than 65 who qualify for benefits due to disability make up 15% of the overall Medicare population, but account for 81% of overdose deaths.
Veteran and Emerging Physical Therapy Leaders Speak Out
Emerging and well-established physical therapy leaders share their perspectives on the profession.
Study: For Children With Autism, Yoga Improves Motor Skills, May Buffer 'Cascading' Effects
Could improved motor skills help with other deficits associated with autism spectrum disorder?
Getting a Handle on the Fee Schedule, Part 2: 4 Things to Know About the KX Modifier, MIPS, Dry Needling, and Revocation
More on the final fee schedule: KX modifier, dry needling, MIPS, and revocations.
Getting a Handle on the Fee Schedule: 6 Things to Know About the New PTA Modifier and Estimated 2021 Cut
6 concepts that can help you understand what the profession is facing.
CMS Rule on Hospital Price Transparency Sets the Stage for Major Shift in Public Access to Charges for Services
CMS is pressing hospitals to be more transparent in sharing prices for services, including physical therapy.
Does Everyone Have a Unique Muscle Activation 'Fingerprint?' Researchers Say Yes
Researchers say humans possess muscle activation "signatures" that are as unique to each individual as fingerprints or iris structure.
New APTA Campaign Makes Membership Personal—And Offers Prizes
APTA's new membership campaign that builds on connections—and offers rewards to members who make them.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, November 2019
Still staying in touch with the profession on her 100th birthday.
APTA Cosponsored Study: Direct Access to Physical Therapy for LBP Saves Money, Lowers Utilization Better When It’s Unrestricted
Unrestricted direct access makes a difference.
Technology's Brave New World of Ethical Challenges Explored in PT in Motion Magazine
That latest piece of technology you're thinking about weaving into your practice? Maybe it should come with a warning label.
Final Outpatient Payment Rule From CMS Eases Supervision, Moves Ahead With 'Site Neutral' Payment Despite Lawsuit
CMS is trying to move ahead with a site-neutral payment policy that's being challenged in court.
Final DMEPOS Rule Attempts to Shape a Clearer, More Predictable System
CMS wants to make payments for devices a little more predictable in light of the ever-increasing—and ever-advancing—range of options available to providers and patients.
Final 2020 Fee Schedule: CMS Relents on PTA Differential System for 2020; Presses on With Planned 8% Cut to Physical Therapy in 2021
"We've brought the association's voice to bear on the PTA modifier issue, and CMS listened. Over the next 12 months, we will leverage every possible opportunity – working with Congress and CMS --to change this flawed policy."
Final Home Health Rule Cements PDGM, Allows PTAs to Perform Maintenance Therapy
Yes, PDGM is happening. But there are some other changes worth checking out.
UnitedHealthcare to Expand Program Waiving Copays, Deductibles for Physical Therapy for LBP
UnitedHealthcare is making it easier for patients with LBP to see a PT.
House, Senate Legislation Could Lead to Major PT Telehealth Opportunities in Medicare
Lawmakers would like to see Medicare ease restrictions on telehealth.
US House Approves Bill to Help Fund Greater Diversity in PT, Other Health Care Education Programs
The bill could help physical therapy academic programs increase student diversity.
Study: Despite Guidelines for OA, Rates of Physician Referral to Physical Therapy Remained Low, Orthopedic Surgeon Narcotic Prescriptions Increased between 2007 and 2015
Researchers say the trends are "counterintuitive."
Foundation, CoHSTAR Offer Fellowship and Scholarship Opportunities
A lot of great fellowships and scholarships out there right now.
MedPAC Updates its Medicare 'Payment Basics' Series
Quick takes and flowcharts on how the payment systems are organized.
New Medicare ID System Goes Fully Operational on January 1, 2020
If you haven't transitioned to Medicare's new patient identifier system, you need to make the switch by December 31.
JAMA: Easing Administrative Complexity, Eliminating Low-Value Care Among Ways to Reduce Health Care Waste and Lower Expenditures
Authors believe addressing unnecessary waste could reduce total health care expenditures by 25%.
Senate Report Calls for More Emphasis on Falls Prevention
Falls prevention programs aren't being used widely enough according to the Senate committee.
Roundtable: Exercise Could 'Transform' Cancer Treatment, Prevention
"A drug with a similar benefit profile would likely be prescribed broadly."
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, October 2019
An APTA member who manages to work in a marathon relay on his wedding day, and lots more in this month's "Good Stuff."
CMS, HHS Propose More Exceptions to, Safe Harbors in Self-Referral Law
"These proposals contain some sensible, much-needed provisions but may not go far enough in promoting fairness and patient choice."
New Tool for Managing Arthritis Focuses on Prevention and Management in Primary Care
October 11, 2019: Nearly 1 in 4 adults in the United States has arthritis—some 54 million people, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Chances are more than good that many of your patients and clients are among them.
APTA: New SNF Payment System Should Drive Quality Patient Care, Not Staff Layoffs
<p><img src="http://www.apta.org/uploadedImages/APTAorg/News_and_Publications/News_Now/PTNews_800x400.png?n=4996" alt="*PT in Motion News" title="*PT in Motion News 800x400 (for FB)" /><br />October 9, 2019: Fewer than 48 hours after the launch of a new Medicare payment system for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), APTA began receiving word from physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapist assistants (PTAs) that a number of providers were announcing layoffs or shifts to PRN roles with reduced hours and fewer or no benefits.</p>
Biased? Me? PT in Motion Magazine Takes a Look at Unconscious Cultural Attitudes
You won't have to search too hard to find a person with biases.
Where Things Stand, What APTA's Doing: Fee Schedule, SNF, and HH Rules From CMS
Where do things stand with CMS rulemaking, and what is APTA doing around the PFS and other developments?
CMS Hospital Discharge Rule Puts the Focus on Patient Choice, Goals in Postacute Care
The new rules are intended to put patients at the center of discharge planning.
APTA Helps You Spread the ChoosePT Message During National Physical Therapy Month
Get your downloadable handouts and posters, and help spread the ChoosePT message.
2019 APTA Honors and Awards Nominations Now Open
Nominate someone you know for national recognition.
CMS Releases a Burden Reduction Rule That Affects a Wide Range of Facilities, Settings
For the most part, the rule hits its target.
APTA to CMS: Proposed 8% Cut is 'Arbitrary' and Puts Patients at Risk
It's an unrealistic plan that will lead to a significant decline in beneficiary access to physical therapy.
APTA Co-Sponsored Study: Seeing a PT First for LBP Lowers Odds of Early and Long-Term Opioid Use
Seeing a PT first for LBP is linked to lower odds of opioid use.
APTA Student-Led 'Flash Action' on Federal Loan Repayment Program Sets Record
This year's flash advocacy effort, aimed at a federal program that offers student debt repayment, was a record-breaker.
PTs in Pain: Study Finds Relationships Between PTs Who Experience MSK Pain and Hours Worked, Patient Volume, and Years of Experience
Hours worked, patient load, and years in the field may play a part in the odds of a PT experiencing MSK pain, according to researchers in Spain.
Leaders from Wyoming, Ohio, Minnesota, and Indiana Honored for State Advocacy Efforts
Members showing what leadership's all about.
Media Tour Takes APTA's 'ChoosePT' Message Nationwide
Pain is complicated, and effectively addressing it requires open communication and a true partnership between providers and patients.
ChoosePT: 5 Ways to Participate in National Physical Therapy Month in October
Ready for National Physical Therapy Month?
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, September 2019
There's an American Ninja Warrior in our midst.
5 Ways to Get Ready for Falls Prevention Awareness Day
Here are a few ways to make the next few days a little more fall-focused.
Time to Act: CMS Proposes Significant 8% Cut to Physical Therapy in 2021
APTA's message to CMS: significant cuts to fee schedule reimbursement for physical therapy providers will put challenging and likely unsustainable financial pressures on PTs.
APTA Launches New ‘Find a PT’ and ‘ChoosePT.com’ Website to Support Consumer Awareness
Join the Find a PT directory (it's free to members), and do everything you can to help consumers choose you.
New Rule Allows CMS to Deny Enrollment to Providers 'Affiliated' With Sanctioned Entities
The rule may create more problems than it solves.
Posture and Movement Coordination, Sensorimotor Integration May Affect Motor Skills in Children With Autism
September 6, 2019: In this review: Postural Control and Interceptive Skills in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder (PTJ, August 2019)
New Clinical Guidelines Find Strong Evidence Supporting Exercise Therapy for Knee Pain
September 4, 2019: In this review: Patellofemoral Pain: Clinical Practice Guidelines Linked to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health From the Academy of Orthopaedic Physical Therapy of the American Physical Therapy Association.
3D Technology: All That's Fit to Print?
When it comes to 3D printing and physical therapy, the future is now—well, almost now. In the September issue of PT in Motion magazine "A New Dimension to Physical Therapy," a feature article that explores
'Fundamentally Flawed': APTA's Comments on CMS' Plan Around PTAs, OTAs Target Potential Harms
Our letter describes the plan as "fundamentally flawed."
4 Videos (and a Podcast) to Get You Ready for Pain Awareness Month
Need inspiration to get you thinking about your own activities during National Pain Awareness Month?
Physical Therapy Education Leader Rosemary Scully Dies
Scully focused much of her career on improving clinical education.
What a Difference a Day Makes: Researchers Say That for TKA, Post-Op Same-Day Physical Therapy Reduces Opioid Use and Shortens Length of Stay
Seize the day (of surgery).
APTA's Comments on FCC Telehealth Proposal Stress Inclusion of PTs and Wider, More Innovative Use
APTA provided FCC with its take on the proposal through a comment letter that emphasizes the inclusion of PTs as qualified telehealth providers.
Study: Mothers Who Exercise During Pregnancy Give Their Infants a Motor Skills Boost
Exercise during pregnancy has lasting effects--for the baby as well as the mother.
Study: Knee, Hip OA May Increase Risk of CVD-Related Death, Underscoring Need for Emphasis on Physical Activity in OA Treatment
Deaths due to CVD are another reason to emphasize physical activity in treatment for hip and knee OA.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, August 2019
Members are transforming the profession and society every day.
Stay Inspired, Motivated, and In-the-Know With These APTA Podcasts
Listen up! APTA's podcasts offer plenty of inspiration and information.
Military System Study: PTs in Primary Care Provide Safe Treatment and Are Less Likely to Order Ancillary Services or Make Referrals
In military health care settings, PTs are part of the primary care team. And it's working--very well, in fact.
APTA Exhibits at 2019 NCSL Legislative Summit
JAMA: Americans Aren't Any More Physically Active Than in 2007—And They're Increasingly Sedentary
Here's some news you shouldn't take sitting down: since the release of national physical activity (PA) guidelines in 2008, Americans haven't really made a dent in improving PA rates, while "significantly" increasing the amount of time spent on sedentary behavior. Those findings were the major revelations from a first-of-its-kind study that factored work, leisure-time, and transportation-related PA (most PA studies have focused on leisure-time activity only).
Physical Therapy Gets Low (Tech)
Evan Norman, PT, DPT, president of a mobile wellness practice in Minnesota, is one of the physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapy device industry professionals who share their thoughts on "unplugged" equipment for "In Praise of Low-Tech Tools," an article in the August edition of PT in Motion magazine.
#Fail? Study Says Physical Therapy's Reach on Social Media Comes up Short
When it comes to using social media to promote the profession, physical therapy may be missing out: that's the conclusion of a recent study that analyzed physical therapy-related tweets and found that, for the most part, Twitter discussions about the profession are occurring in an "echo chamber"—if they even rise to the level of a discussion in the first place.
IRFs Receive 2.5% Increase From CMS in FY 2020; Additional Reporting Requirements in FY 2022
More money, and more reporting requirements.
Gregory Hicks Appointed to APTA’s Board of Directors
The APTA Board of Directors has a new member.
Final SNF Rule Sets New Payment System Into Motion October 1
PDPM is a go, along with a change to group therapy parameters pressed for by APTA.
Proposed Outpatient Payment Rule From CMS Continues Previous Trends
Hospitals get a supervision break in the proposed rule.
Proposed DMEPOS Rule From CMS Aimed at Predictability, Clarity
Will a "comparable item analysis" plan help CMS determine fees for new DMEPOS items?
Proposed Fee Schedule Rule Wrestles With PTA, OTA Services Delivered 'In Part'; Includes Changes to MIPS
APTA believes the PTA and OTA plan proposed by CMS could hurt patient access to care.
9 Conversations to Have With Your Legislators While They're Back Home in August
There's lots to talk about with your legislator while they're home.
Help Highlight the Importance of 'Safe and Sound' Workplaces in August
One way to achieve the physical therapy profession's goals of a healthier society is to help that society avoid sickness and injury to begin with.
Members-Only Webinar Will Focus on Demonstrating Value in New Home Health Payment System
Medicare's home health payment system is set to change dramatically. Are you ready?
APTA Working for You: Commercial Payer Updates, July 2019
Find out how APTA helps its members by staying on top of changes and bringing the profession's voice to the table.
APTA, Alliance for Physical Therapy Quality and Innovation Report Explores Relationship of 'Baseline' Patient Factors and Patient-Reported Outcomes
APTA and the Alliance call the report "the largest multipractice analysis of open-source, risk-adjusted clinical outcomes in the outpatient physical therapy industry."
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, July 2019
The Ninja Warrior SPT, battling text-neck, and more.
2019 ELI Fellows Graduate From What's Now a National Award-Winning Program
This year's ELI graduates know they're part of something special--and the American Society of Association Executives agrees.
APTA Programs Earn National Recognition
APTA was nationally recognized for its Financial Solutions Center and its Education Leadership Institute program.
APTA Centennial Website Makes Its Debut
What do you think are some of the profession's most important milestones? A new centennial site from APTA wants to hear from you.
Summer Reading: 8 Great APTA Blog Posts You Might've Missed
Graduations, vacations, family reunions, binge-watching season 3 of "Stranger Things"…it's entirely understandable if you've been a little distracted over the past few months.
Proposed Home Health Rule Moves Ahead With New Payment System, Allows Therapist Assistants to Furnish Maintenance Therapy
July 12, 2019: The US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) intends to go full steam ahead with its plans to shift to a new payment system for home health beginning in 2020. The plans are accompanied by other changes that include allowing maintenance therapy to be furnished by physical therapist assistants (PTAs) and occupational therapy assistants (OTAs), providing a payment "add on" for rural home health care, and adopting an APTA-supported "notice of admission" requirement to avoid duplicate billing. The new provisions, which include a 1.3% payment increase, are included in CMS’ proposed rule released on July 11.
APTA-Backed Bill to Provide Diversity-Based Scholarships, Stipends Introduced in House
APTA's efforts to create a physical therapy profession as diverse as the society it serves could be getting a significant legislative boost.
Survey of PTs Reveals 'Significantly Inadequate' Rates of BP and HR Measurement
Nearly 7 in 10 PTs said they encountered a new patient with or at risk for CVD at least twice a week.
JAMA Neurology: Telerehab Program Works as Well as Clinic-Based Program for Improved Arm Function Poststroke
Further support of the ideas behind APTA's efforts to increase telehealth opportunities for PTs and their patients.
From PT in Motion Magazine: Social Determinants of Health
Health care is one thing. But the context of that care, the constellation of factors that can affect health for individuals and entire communities? That's something else entirely.
APTA, AOTA, ASHA Create Guide to Assess Habilitative, Rehabilitative Insurance Benefits
The guide is rooted in the idea that the benefits are necessary not just to improve function but also to maintain it, and that physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology are the key services in any habilitation/rehabilitation benefit package.
APTA Members Can Now Get $175 Off MedBridge Subscription
Regular subscription price is $375--MedBridge is knocking off $175 for APTA members.
APTA Survey: PTs Say Administrative Burdens Delay Access, Affect Clinical Outcomes
Think that administrative burdens are hurting your ability to provide the best possible care? You're not alone.
Expanded Health Reimbursement Arrangement Rule May Widen Use of the Employer Offering
APTA's advice: keep an eye open, and be aware of the nuances of HRA payment.
Older-Adult Deaths From Falls Have Increased; Intervention May Help Decrease Falls in the Future
Rates of death from falls more than doubled between 2006 and 2016.
PTJ's Research Impact on the Rise
The influence of APTA's scientific journal continues to grow.
News From NEXT: Rural Health Care has Plenty of Challenges, Promising Opportunities
"We have all these conditions that are worse in rural settings, but the money's not there."
News From NEXT: Understanding Personality Types Can Enhance the PT-Patient Relationship
“It’s not their responsibility to come to us or to meet us half way. It’s our responsibility to meet them.”
News From NEXT: Attendees Rebuild Toy Cars to Aid Children’s Mobility
GoBabyGo at NEXT.
'Allow Mistakes': Study of Infants With CP Emphasizes Importance of Balanced Approach to Movement Learning
Reinforcement learning or error-based learning?
UnitedHealthcare Announces New Pilot Program to Increase Access to Physical Therapist Services as Result of Collaboration With APTA
The pilot follows a multiyear collaboration between APTA, Optum Labs, and UHC.
News From NEXT: 2018-2019 Marquette Challenge Raises Over $266,000 for the Foundation
Which school came out on top in the funding challenge?
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, June 2019
PTs making their mark on professional sports teams, a PT sculptor, and PT-led drum circles as part of a pain management program--all part of this month's "Good Stuff."
News From NEXT: Oxford Debaters Argue: Is Social Media Hazardous?
The verdict is in: social media is hazardous to the physical therapy profession. At least some of the time. That was the outcome of the 12th annual Oxford Debate, during APTA's NEXT Conference and Exposition in Chicago.
News From NEXT: For Optimal Outcomes, Look Beyond Compensation Patterns, Maley Lecturer Says
"Any movement-related profession—personal trainers, athletic trainers, dance therapists, yoga instructors—who can observe impairments such as a weak muscle can try to fix it," said Beth Fisher, PT, PhD, FAPTA, in delivering the 24th John H. P. Maley Lecture on June 14 at APTA' NEXT Conference & Exposition. However, too often the "fix" involves the patient compensating with movement patterns that interfere with the ability of an affected limb to improve to its true potential. Fisher argued that with their level of education and skill, physical therapists (PTs) can and should identify and help the patient recover that capability.
News From NEXT: McMillan Lecturer Outlines Keys to Excellence in the Physical Therapy Profession
Tom McPoil, PT, PhD, FAPTA, said he intentionally structured the title of the 50th McMillan Lecture—"Is Excellence in the Cards?" as a question "to raise an element of doubt or uncertainty in our quest to achieve excellence." After all, he said during his delivery of the lecture on June 13 as part of the APTA NEXT Conference and Exposition in Chicago, he has several concerns regarding the profession’s ability to achieve excellence.
News From NEXT: Building Wellness Programs in the Least Likely Places
Sometimes, basic assumptions beg to be questioned. Just ask physical therapists (PTs) in the oncology rehabilitation department of Froedtert Hospital and Medical College of Wisconsin, who wondered why prevention and wellness couldn't be a part of the patient experience from the moment they entered the facility's doors.
News From NEXT: How One Hospital Implemented Direct Access
A panel of PTs from the Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) in New York explained how that institution implemented direct access (DA) to physical therapist services during a June 13 session at APTA's 2019 NEXT Conference and Exposition. They then advised attendees how to operationalize DA at their own institutions.
News From NEXT: A Moving Account of a Journey Out of Pain and Addiction—And a PT's Crucial Role
"I failed my marriage. I failed as a father. I failed my career. And I didn't even know it was happening."
Vision in Action: 2019 House of Delegates Sees Important Role for APTA in Host of Professional, Societal Issues
One theme was clear: the House believes APTA has the potential to be a change agent for the profession and society at large.
APTA Board Member Sheila Nicholson Dies
Sheila Nicholson, PT, DPT, JD, MBA, MA, a member of the APTA Board of Directors and passionate advocate for the physical therapy profession, died on June 12, after a more than 2 year battle with cancer. She was 57.
Can't-Miss Special Edition of PTJ Focuses on Intersection of Pediatric Physical Therapy and Developmental Science
Don't miss this special issue of PTJ.
What's New at PTNow?
Haven't visited PTNow lately? Check out what you missed.
What's New at PTNow? More Guidelines and Systematic Reviews Enrich an Already-Robust Resource(1)
PTNow, the association's flagship site for evidence based practice resources, continues to expand in ways that help PTs and PTAs easily access the evidence they need in just a few clicks. If you haven't visited the site lately, check it
APTA 2019 House of Delegates Election Results Announced
June 10, 2019: The following members were elected to APTA's Board of Directors and Nominating Committee on Monday, June 10, at the 2019 House of Delegates in Chicago.
APTA Reveals Future National Logo as Part of Association Branding Project
APTA is an association on the move, and soon it will have a logo to match. Monday, June 10, 2019, the association unveiled its future national logo, which it will begin using in the summer of 2020, coinciding with the launch of a new APTA.org.
'Where Might We Be Now?' APTA Congressional Briefing Makes a Personal Case for Pain Treatment Alternatives
The plan was set on May 21, APTA would hold a congressional briefing on the importance of increasing patient access to nonpharmacological approaches to pain treatment. The event would be highlighted by the story of Cindy Whyde and her
Get Involved With APTA: 5 'Light Lift' (and Fun) Opportunities
APTA Engage is a comprehensive volunteer portal that makes it easy to find and apply for a wide range of volunteer opportunities—including some "light lift" options.
VA Rolls Out New Community Care Program
VA thinks the program will be an improvement over VA Choice.
OSHA Responds to APTA by Affirming the PT's Role in First Aid
The OSHA clarification is a response from a meeting secured by APTA government affairs staff in partnership with the APTA Academy of Orthopaedic Physical Therapy’s Occupational Health Special Interest Group and the APTA Private Practice Section.
Study: Burnout Comes at a (Literal) Cost to Organizations
Estimates are in the billions.
From PT in Motion Magazine: The Power of Adaptive Sports
Are PTs, PTAs, and students up to speed on adaptive sports?
Final HHS Report on Pain Management Adds to Drumbeat for Better Access to Nondrug Approaches
It's a report that in many ways echoes APTA's white paper on opioids and pain management published nearly 1 year ago.
Study Reveals Racial Disparities in Postdischarge Rehab After Traumatic Injury
Are recovery pathways after traumatic injury different for African-Americans and Caucasians?
CoHSTAR Pilot Study Deadline June 1
Interested in pursuing a pilot study for CoHSTAR? The application deadline is soon.
Study Identifies 11 Guideline-Based Recommendations for Musculoskeletal Pain
The 11 recommendations include calls for patient-centered approaches, attention to psychosocial issues, and use of nonsurgical care as a first-line treatment.
America's 'Fittest Cities' Ranked
May 21, 2019: Live in or near Arlington, Virginia? Congratulations: you reside in the nation's most fit city, according to results of a new study that ranks cities across the United States. The rankings are part of the 2019 American College of Sports Medicine's (ACSM) "Fitness Index," a project that analyzed health and environmental data to arrive at an overall fitness score
Move Forward Radio: Individuals Who Are Transgender Deserve Person-Centered Care – Just Like Everyone Else
"All bodies are good bodies, and we're going to make sure that all bodies feel the way they're supposed to feel."
Legislation to Include PTs in Student Loan Relief Program Now in House and Senate
The bill would add PTs to a federal initiative that provides greater patient access to health care in rural and underserved areas—and incentivizes health care provider participation through a student loan forgiveness program.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, May 2019
Comedian members, Ski Patrol members, marathon-winning members, and more.
Study: Patients in Cardiac Rehab Are Older, Less Healthy, and Have More Diverse Needs Than Patients 20 Years Ago
Rates of diabetes, hypertension, and obesity are up.
30 Minutes of 'Acute' Exercise Temporarily Boosts Memory-Related Brain Activity, Strengthens Brain Over Time
30 minutes of exercise can improve recall temporarily and condition your brain to work more efficiently in the long run.
CDC: Arthritis Affects 1 in 4 in US; More Emphasis on Physical Activity Needed
The findings point to a position long-supported by APTA: increased PA among individuals with arthritis can have a marked impact on reducing pain severity and increasing function.
From PT in Motion Magazine: 50 Years of PTAs
1969 wasn't all Woodstock and moonwalks. Just ask a PTA.
Study of Health System Reveals Good Functional Outcomes for Patients in Bundled Care Model
Do bundled care models work for patients? A new study says yes.
Time to Standardize Acute Care Rehab for Patients Poststroke, Say Researchers
About 15% of all patients poststroke received no rehabilitation services while in acute care.
Study: 54% of Middle-Income Seniors Won't be Able to Afford Assisted Living Costs, Medical Expenses in 10 Years
The results aren't encouraging for middle-class seniors, defined as those 75 and older with annuitized financial resources of between $25,000 and $74,298 in 2014 dollars.
APTA, Other Organizations, Will Share Anti-Opioid Efforts
More than 100 groups will be exchanging information and sharing experiences of their efforts to battle the opioid abuse crisis.
5 Ways to Get Up to Speed on Interprofessional Health Care in Education and Practice
From research papers to PT in Motion magazine feature articles, there's a little something for everyone.
Congressional Roundup: What's on APTA's Legislative Advocacy Radar
There's someimportant legislation in the works, and APTA and its members are there to advocate.
APTA President Sharon Dunn Named Dean of LSU Shreveport's School of Allied Health Professions
"Sharon has been a tireless advocate for the profession, the highest standards of health care, and patients' rights everywhere."
Beyond the Sessions: 7 NEXT Opportunities Worth Checking Out
NEXT offers hands-on experiences, interactive learning opportunities, and plenty of ways to network and have a great time—this year, in 1 of the most vibrant cities in the country.
APTA Sheds Light on Upcoming MIPS, Registry Deadlines
Deadlines are coming. Do you know what you need to do, and when you need to do it?
Proposed SNF Rule Relaxes Group Therapy Requirements, Increases Payment by 2.5%
"The expanded definition of group therapy is very much in line with APTA's ongoing effort to advocate for the value of the PT's clinical judgment."
IRFs Could See 2.5% Increase From CMS in FY 2020; Additional Reporting Requirements in FY 2022
CMS wants to gather more information on social determinants of health.
CMS Adds to DMEPOS Prior Authorization List
Seven of the 12 new codes are related to power mobility devices, with the additional 5 related to pressure-reducing support surfaces.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, April 2019
Traumatophobia, "citizen science," and improving health in Vietnam, among other notable mentions of members in the media.
New Phys Ed Studies Say There's More Work to Do
Attendance in PE classes hasn't changed much. But that's not necessarily a good thing.
APTA Annual Report: 2018's Achievements Are Shaping the Future of the Profession
It's a story of how how creating connections can pay off—not only in meeting current challenges, but in setting a course for the profession's future.
PTJ: Falls Are 'Critical Health Hazard' for Individuals With Upper Limb Loss
Single-fall prevalence for this population is higher than for older individuals and community-dwelling stroke survivors.
CDC Reiterates Limits of Opioid Prescribing Guideline
The CDC clarification is consistent with APTA messaging in its #ChoosePT campaign and elsewhere.
Foundation Announces 2019 Grant Opportunities
A lifetime APTA member made a new major grant a reality.
New Pilot Study Opportunities Available From CoHSTAR
As much as $25k per project is available for direct costs.
JAMA Oncology: Telerehab Makes a Difference in Patients With Advanced-Stage Cancer
"Surprisingly modest functional losses and gains among individuals with borderline dependency…can profoundly affect their requirement for inpatient care."
CMS Home Health Preclaim, Postpayment Review System Again Ready to Launch in Illinois
After false starts, restarts, postponements, and more than a little pushback from APTA and other stakeholders, CMS is ready to once again roll out a home health agency (HHA) payment program in Illinois that would force HHA providers in the state to participate in preclaim or postpayment reviews—or choose a third option that would involve "minimal" postpayment review but cut payment by 25%.
Student Loan Repayment Program to Include PTs? Health Services Corps Bill Reintroduced in US Senate
It's back: APTA-supported legislation that would list physical therapists (PTs) among the professions included in a federal program to provide greater patient access to health care in rural and underserved areas has been reintroduced in the Senate. If passed into law, the program could open up access to a student loan repayment program for participating PTs—and help address the nation's opioid crisis in areas that have been especially hard-hit.
2019 House of Delegates Motions Now Posted
The compilation contains 70 House motions.
Statehouse Roundup: Licensure Compact Progress; Chapters Press for Changes to Direct Access, Pain Management Policy, Payment, and More
Providing all goes as hoped during current state legislative sessions, the Physical Therapy Licensure Compact could pass the halfway mark in its progress toward adoption in every state, with a potential for 28 states to be participating in the system that allows physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapist assistants (PTAs) licensed in 1 compact state to obtain practice privileges in others.
From PT in Motion Magazine: Regenerative Medicine and the PT
Patient, heal thyself. Maybe that's not exactly what regenerative medicine is all about, but it's close: with its emphasis on enhancing the body's own genetically driven capabilities to repair damage and reestablish neural connections, regenerative medicine is pushing the boundaries of what we know about the healing capacities hidden in our own DNA. And physical therapists (PTs) are bringing an important perspective and set of unique skills to the field.
From Move Forward Radio: Motivated by Physical Therapy Experience, Woman Is Inspired to Give Back
Move Forward Radio: great listening for you and your patients.
New DPT Honor Society Readies to Announce First Inductees
Think current DPT students are impressive? The American Council of Academic Physical Therapy couldn't agree more.
It's Never Too Late: Study Finds Beginning PA Later in Life Reduces Mortality Risk Nearly as Much as Remaining Active From Adolescence
Researchers were in for a surprise.
Too Much Focus on Productivity Increases Risk of Unethical Behavior, Say Researchers
Too Much Focus on Productivity Increases Risk of Unethical Behavior, Say Researchers
Study: Light Physical Activity Could Help to Lower Risk of Coronary and Cardiovascular Problems
Even light PA—walking, gardening, stretching exercises—can make a significant difference in risk of CHD and CVD, researchers say.
President's Budget Proposes Cuts to Public Health Programs, Health Research, Medicare, and Medicaid
While the budget itself isn't likely to survive, there's a danger that some of the more damaging concepts could live on. Health Care Headlines President's Budget Proposes Cuts to Public Health Programs, Health Research, Medicare, and Medicaid
Researchers Find 'Only Positive Effects' From PTs in Primary Care Role
Get thee to a PT.
The Good Stuff: Members and the Profession in the Media, March 2019
Members looking at the relationship between sound and movement, among other Good Stuff. Check it out!
North Carolina PTs Get Decisive Dry Needling Win
After a nearly 4-year battle, physical therapists (PTs) in North Carolina can finally claim victory in their fight to protect dry needling.
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