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  • Foundation Grants Focus on ICU Survivors, Exercise Effects on Diabetes, Blood Flow Restriction, and More

    An APTA-sponsored $40,000 Health Services Research Pipeline grant will support a project aimed at conducting the first-ever comprehensive evaluation of variability in rehabilitation delivery to older intensive care unit (ICU) survivors. The award was among several Foundation for Physical Therapy Research (Foundation) grants and scholarship awards totaling more than $600,000 in 2019.

    Grant recipient Jason Falvey, DPT, PhD, will investigate both in-home and community- based rehabilitation of the older ICU survivor population, including an exploration of the impact rehabilitation may have on functional outcomes and hospital readmissions. Falvey is a postdoctoral fellow at the Yale School of Medicine.

    APTA is the Foundation's Pinnacle Partner in Research and has been a leading donor in funding major research initiatives such as the Center on Health Services Training and Research (CoHSTAR), investing in research priorities to strengthen the physical therapy profession, and supporting the Foundation's scholarship program each year.

    In addition, the Foundation expanded its portfolio of grant and scholarship opportunities in 2019 with the launch of the Goergeny High-Impact Research Grant, an offering focused on the role of physical therapy in the prevention of secondary health conditions, body structures and functions, activity limitations, or participation restrictions. The first investigator to receive the Goergeny award is Smita Rao, PT, PhD, of New York University, who will receive $240,000 over the next 2 years for a study that will investigate the effects of exercise on hyaluronan accumulation in people with type 2 diabetes.

    Other grant and scholarship announcements from the Foundation:

    Saurabh Mehta, PT, MSc, PhD, the recipient of the $40,000 VCU-Marquette Challenge Research Grant, will examine the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary outcomes of an evidence-based program (developed by physical therapists in Denmark) for people with knee osteoarthritis. This grant is funded in part by APTA's Supporting the Professions Fund.

    Aliza Rudavsky, PT, DPT, PhD, was awarded the $40,000 Pelvic Health Research Grant. The goal for her project, titled “Concurrent Validity of Novel Transabdominal Pelvic Floor Ultrasound During Glottis Tasks,” is to test a new method of measuring transabdominal ultrasound imaging and comparing it with the gold standard transperineal method. This award is supported by the APTA Academy of Pelvic Health Physical Therapy.

    Cristine Agresta, PT, MPT, PhD, was named recipient the $100,000 Magistro Family Foundation Research Grant in support of a project that will assess the effectiveness of personalized blood flow restriction against current standard rehabilitation procedures after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction surgery. This project is funded by the Foundation's Magistro Family Endowment Fund and Legacy Research Fund.

    Alyssa LeForme Fiss, PT, MPT, PhD, who was awarded the $40,000 Pediatric Research Grant, will conduct research to determine the effects of adaptive behavior physical therapist intervention delivered in addition to traditional physical or occupational therapist services for families with infants diagnosed with or at high risk for cerebral palsy. This grant is supported by the Pediatric Research Fund and the APTA Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy.

    “FPTR grants help strengthen the profession and elevate research in physical therapy,” said Foundation Board of Trustees President Edelle Field-Fote, PT, PhD, FAPTA, in a Foundation news release. “With the help of our community of donors, we continue to fund top researchers and the most promising science in the field of physical therapy. Each project has the potential to improve outcomes for the patients we serve as physical therapists.”

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