Newt Gingrich to Deliver Keynote Address at APTA's Annual Conference

ALEXANDRIA, VA, June 8, 2009 — Newt Gingrich, former speaker of the House of Representitives and founder of the Center for Health Transformation, will address more than 2,000 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and physical therapy students at the Opening Ceremonies of the American Physical Therapy Association's (APTA's) Annual Conference & Exposition (PT 2009) on Wednesday, June 10, 5:30 - 7:30 pm at the Baltimore Convention Center in Maryland. He has been asked to focus his remarks on his vision for a health care system of the future, which is prevention-focused, knowledge-intense, innovation-rich and centered on the individual.

As an author on the subject, Gingrich has been outspoken in recent months as debate regarding President Obama's plans for health care reform builds. His new book, "Saving Lives & Saving Money: Transforming Health Care in the 21st Century," delves into his thoughts on the current health care system and how he feels it should evolve for improved efficiency and a healthier future.

"APTA has been monitoring and working with key players on Capitol Hill to ensure the physical therapy profession is properly represented as plans for health care reform are developed and rolled out," said APTA President R Scott Ward, PT, PhD. "At a time when our health care system is under scrutiny and poised for change it is important for us to hear many viewpoints on the possible future of health care in the United States. Mr. Gingrich's perspective of issues such as the rising costs in health care and Medicare reform will be especially interesting to us."

PT 2009 will take place from June 10-13. Other conference highlights include the Oxford Debate, an interactive discussion during which the audience shares opinions and challenges featured debaters. This event will take place on Friday, June 12 from 5:15 - 6:15 pm in the Hilton Baltimore's Key Ballrooms. The 40th McMillian Lecture, APTA's highest honor, will be given by physical therapist Carolee Winstein, PT, PhD, FAPTA. The lecture is entitled, "The Best We Can Be Is Yet to Come," and will take place on Thursday, June 11 from 11 am - 12 pm in the Convention Center's Ballrooms 1 and 2. The Maley Lecture, entitled, "Perspectives on Functional Reform for an Impaired Payment System" given by physical therapist Helene M Fearon, PT, is scheduled for Friday, June 12 from 11 am - 12 pm in the Convention Center's Ballrooms 1 and 2.

The annual Foundation for Physical Therapy Dinner Dance - Celebrating 30 Years of Research, will take place on Thursday, June 11 from 6:30 pm until midnight in the Hilton Baltimore's Holiday Ballrooms 1-6. A first-ever bequest from a physical therapy patient, left by Landsdale and Gladys Clagett of Upper Marlboro, MD, will be announced during the event. In addition, the Foundation will award the following 2009 service awards and honors:

  • The Spirit of Philanthropy Award presented to Rep. Jim Langevin (D-Rhode Island) in recognition of his work on behalf of rehabilitation, health insurance, stem cell research, power mobility, and other health-related issues;
  • The Charles M Magistro Distinguished Serviceto physical therapist Stanley Paris, PT, PhD, FAPTA, in recognition of his outstanding personal commitment to raising awareness and funds for the Foundation through his attempt to swim the English Channel in 2008;
  • The Robert C Bartlett Innovation in Fundraising Awardto physical therapist assistant Brad Thuringer, PTA, for his efforts to encourage fellow physical therapist assistants to become engaged with and support the Foundation's mission; and
  • The Premier Partner in Research honor to PREFERRED Therapy Providers, Inc. for their generous and long-standing contributions and support of the Foundation and its mission.

Other conference highlights include:

  • Platform presentations of original scientific data collected by authors and presented in 15-minute segments.
  • Poster presentations of original scientific data displayed in the Exhibit Hall.
  • Access to more than 250 exhibitors demonstrating the latest cutting-edge physical therapy technology and equipment, and a Resource Center, featuring the latest physical therapy products and publications.
  • Hundreds of educational sessions presented by top leaders in the profession.
  • Access to information on the latest physical therapy clinical practices and research.
  • Opportunities to attend a variety of networking and social events.

APTA's Annual Conference & Exposition strives to empower, educate, and encourage physical therapists and physical therapist assistants. All educational sessions are designed to reflect evidence in practice and to integrate the best research evidence with clinical expertise and patient/client values.

Physical therapists are highly-educated, licensed health care professionals who can help patients reduce pain and improve or restore mobility — in many cases without expensive surgery or the side effects of prescription medications. APTA represents more than 72,000 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and students of physical therapy nationwide. Its purpose is to improve the health and quality of life of individuals through the advancement of physical therapist practice, education, and research.In most states, patients can make an appointment directly with a physical therapist, without a physician referral. Learn more about conditions physical therapists can treat and find a physical therapist in your area at