A Transformative Year. And We're Just Getting Started!
It's hard to believe another year is drawing to a close. In the last 6 months, as your new president, I have had the honor to meet and learn from many of you, and embrace the partnership we share as members of APTA. It is a partnership I find critical to success as we work to achieve our vision.
"Transforming society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience." Those words—our vision—inspired excitement across the organization and its components when the House of Delegates adopted them in 2013. But the vision is more than just words. Together, we've drawn on that excitement and worked to translate it into meaningful action. Action that will serve as the foundation for achieving our vision.
Looking back on 2015, I am so proud of the many landmark strides we've made together. I feel compelled to briefly touch on some of the highlights.
In 2015, we worked to transform society through our consumer outreach and education campaigns, generating more than 2,500 mentions in digital and print media across the nation and a record 1.5 million visits to our consumer website, MoveForwardPT.com. Through successful federal and state advocacy, the sustainable growth rate (SGR) was repealed, and 21 million Americans now have better access to physical therapy thanks to improved direct access laws throughout the country. There are now more than 40 clinical practice guidelines under development that will help you navigate the evolving practice environment. Also this year, APTA was inspired to see members of the association step up to create the Global PT Day of Service, an event aimed at connecting us with our communities. We were pleased to support this transformative grassroots effort, which drew participation in all 50 states and 24 countries around the world. Conceived of and executed by early-career members, this effort and others like it will bring our vision to reality.
There is so much more, and I encourage you to explore this 2015 Year in Review webpage, which includes a podcast, infographics, and other resources, to see how you and your association lived up to the promise of transforming society. The most important point, after all, is the story it tells of our collective efforts to make a meaningful impact on our patients and clients, our profession, and the world around us through the transformative power of physical therapy.
In my travels and talks as APTA president, I have many times heard and spoken the words "we're better together." It's not a new concept but it's an important one. One that rings true. We could not have achieved any of this without the work, support, and camaraderie of our members and components.
Finally, as we proceed on our path to achieving our vision, it is important to remember to take a moment not only to savor our accomplishments but also to celebrate life, enjoy the holiday season, rejoice in each other, and, perhaps most important, embrace our loved ones, as they are indeed part of the society we strive to transform.
All the very best to you, and here's to a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year!
Sharon L. Dunn, PT, PhD, OCS
Explore Some of the Highlights of 2015