Proposed by the Arizona chapter, RC 2-17 amends the Association’s role in advocacy for prevention, wellness, fitness, health promotion, and management of disease and disability to include the individual as an advocate for the profession. Previously, advocacy included developing collaborative, interprofessional and partnering relationships with only health care and community organizations that advocate for prevention, wellness, fitness, health promotion, and management of disease and disability.

Collaborative relationships that have the potential to advance the Vision for the Physical Therapy Profession and leverage efforts to develop and implement effective population health management strategies

By adding the term “individual” to the position adopted last year, this motion will open up doors for further collaboration with individual professionals internally and externally of the association. It also promotes our (PTs) roles in lifestyle interventions/lifestyle medicine through collaboration with professionals who share the same goal of reducing the impact of disease and disability. By highlighting opportunities for collaboration both within and outside of the APTA, the association recognizes the interdependent role physical therapists have when seeking to improve current health management strategies. Such examples of individuals whom collaboration opportunities exist and are “successfully integrating lifestyle intervention into their professional practices” include:

1) Jennifer Gamboa, PT, DPT, (@jmgdpt) President and Director at Body Dynamics and well as a member of the Board of Directors of the Arlington Free Clinic, Jennifer is “recognized as a leader in the field of orthopedic and performing arts physical therapy and a pioneer in the development of an integrated practice model for physical therapy and wellness.”

2) Michael Eisenhart, PT , (@mikeeisenhart) President of the association’s NJ Chapter (2015-2017), and Pro-Activity’s managing partner, which was created to collaborate health professionals passionate about educating and coaching clients about injury and disease prevention, as well as human performance and achievement.

3) Jessica Berglund, PT, DPT, (@jberglund20) Both a member of the APTA and American College of Sports Medicine, she is a groundbreaking advocate for both the professional of physical therapy as well as our role in wellness and prevention.

Additionally, External organizations such as the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, which includes physicians, medical professionals, allied health professionals, and other professionals who are also committed to the common goal of wellness and prevention.

Though we can all agree that having a role in wellness and prevention is “the key to the future;” the question exists that is adding “the individual” to this position the best stance for the association? As stated above there are numerous pros to adding this language, but what could go wrong with this?

Some argue that this could result in self-promotion or potentially ulterior motives for individuals who may benefit from this term. Another question may be—what does this mean for current clinicians who don’t have formal education in prevention and wellness? Will this now be another requirement that DPT programs will have to face? How will this be measured? How will this be reimbursed? These questions may be going deeper into the context of what the motion is, but worthy of consideration. Let us hear your opinion and follow us on Facebook here.

 

References

American Physical Therapy Association. Packet I: Reference Committee 1-17. Alexandria, VA. 2016:16-18.

Clinical Team – Body Dynamics, Inc. Bodydynamicsinccom. 2017. Available at: http://www.bodydynamicsinc.com/sustained-health/clinical-team/#hideslide0p11. Accessed May 18, 2017.

Home. Pro-Activity.com. 2017. Available at: http://www.pro-activity.com/. Accessed May 18, 2017.

Live Your Life™ | Physical Therapists | Eva Norman Founder & President, Sara Petrich DPT, Jessica Berglund DPT, Carrie Schoeder DPT, Amy Anderson PT & MPT. Liveyourlifeptcom. 2017. Available at: http://www.liveyourlifept.com/meet-our-staff/physical-therapists. Accessed May 18, 2017.