APTA Gives $1 Million to Foundation to Create the Center of Excellence for Health Services Research

Gift to be made over 5 years beginning in 2014.  

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ALEXANDRIA, VA, January 18, 2013 — The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) has pledged $1 million to the Foundation for Physical Therapy to help create the Center of Excellence (COE) for Health Services/Health Policy Research.

The COE will provide training for physical therapy researchers to conduct health services/health policy (HS/HP) research. HS/HP research will examine physical therapy resource utilization, costs, and quality, and will identify the most effective ways to deliver, organize, finance, and assess outcomes of health care services.

"We need researchers who can develop the essential body of knowledge showing what works in physical therapy, for what conditions, under what circumstances, and at what cost," explained APTA President Paul A. Rockar Jr, PT, DPT, MS. "A new set of research skills are needed by our profession in addition to those of traditional clinical science. We fully expect the COE to change the face of physical therapy and ultimately to improve patient outcomes."

Academic institutions will compete for funds to start the nation's first training program to develop physical therapy investigators in HS/HP research. The selected institution must promote an intellectual environment that attracts members of the physical therapy profession to HS/HP research, provide research experience, mentorships, and opportunities for collaboration with scientists from other disciplines, and conduct pilot projects leading to future high-impact health services research studies.

"On behalf of the Foundation for Physical Therapy Board of Trustees, I thank APTA for this tremendous support," said Foundation President William G. Boissonnault, PT, DPT, DHSc, FAPTA, FAAOMPT. "This cornerstone gift brings the Center of Excellence for Health Services/Health Policy Research much closer to reality for our profession. This is one more example of APTA's ongoing commitment to the advancement of physical therapy research that is critical to the profession's future. We are most grateful for its partnership with this vital endeavor."

Data provided by HS/HP research will equip the physical therapy profession with the tools needed to function in today's health care system. These include diffusion of practice innovations and standardized practice models and health policy leadership, universal standardized measurement and data collection tools, quality improvement and implementation techniques, and interprofessional coordination and care management.

About APTA
The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) represents more than 85,000 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and students of physical therapy nationwide. Learn more about conditions physical therapists can treat and find a physical therapist in your area at www.MoveForwardPT.com. Consumers are encouraged to follow us on Twitter (@MoveForwardPT), Facebook, YouTube and Pinterest.

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