National Physical Therapy Month (NPTM) is our opportunity each year to take time to recognize the transformative power of physical therapists.
America continues to fight a devastating opioid epidemic. No state is untouched. In 2016 physical therapy was identified as part of the solution by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and then US Surgeon General, Vivek H. Murthy. That year APTA launched the #ChoosePT campaign to educate the public about physical therapist services as a safe alternative to opioids for treatment of pain.
APTA's #ChoosePT campaign has already reached millions with its vital and empowering message. It is critical that we get ahead of this epidemic through prevention of addiction through alternative treatments. This fall APTA will continue to build on the momentum of #ChoosePT.
Everyone in this profession can serve as an ambassador for physical therapy, and NPTM is a call for each of us to reach beyond the walls of our clinics and classrooms to connect with the public at large.
To help you, the #ChoosePT webpage includes a campaign toolkit, and the National Physical Therapy Month webpage offers an event planning guide, sample news release, tips for contacting the media, and customizable patient handouts.
As you observe National Physical Therapy Month and promote the #ChoosePT campaign, please share photos of your efforts on social media using the #PTmonth and #ChoosePT hashtags, and email photos and descriptions of your activities to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am looking forward to seeing the many creative ways you spread the word. Here's to another successful NPTM.
Sharon L. Dunn, PT, PhD
Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy
President, American Physical Therapy Association