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  • RC3-11 Task Force Member Information Posted

    At its June 2011 meeting, the House of Delegates adopted a motion charging APTA's Board of Directors (Board) to review the current model of the physical therapist, physical therapist assistant, and physical therapy aide as the only participants involved in the delivery of physical therapist services and to identify other potential models for delivery of these services. This work is being conducted by a Board-appointed task force. During its July 26 meeting, the Board appointed individuals to serve on this task force by reviewing the skills and expertise needed to fulfill the task force's charge and identifying persons from the volunteer applicant pool with the skills and expertise needed. This task force is now formally named the Health Care Professionals and Personnel Involved in the Delivery of Physical Therapy Task Force. In response to inquiries from members about the experience and background of task force members, biographical information about the 11 task force members now is available. Direct any questions to RC3-11@apta.org.


    • Physical Therapy has been for years working hard to secure he term Physical Therapy for Physical therapists. Once we give away this term to anyone with a degree it opens the profession up to anyone who wants to bill physical therapy treatment. Why work so long to withhold the term physical therapy for physical therapists then allow anyone to use it? What can physical therapist do to help retain this solid alliance between physical therapist and physical therapist assistances? Thanks Brandie Tomme DPT

      Posted by Brandie Tomme on 11/4/2011 2:08 PM

    • Anyone who cares about the integrity of our profession really should be working against this bill. Care standards will be reduced patients will suffer. This bill should be called the "cheap labor before patients" act. All red herrings about PT autonomy aside, everyone knows exactly what this bill is about. Saving money. We are at a crossroads as a profession in terms of reimbursement. But it should be clear that tossing half the profession off the boat while subjecting patients to unprofessional care is not the answer. Call the APTA and make your voice heard. PT's and PTA's alike can work together to stop a minority of private practice owners from forcing a major unwanted and unwarranted change on the entire profession.

      Posted by Jon Elder on 11/6/2011 1:05 AM

    • From the moment I read these RCs prior to the House, I felt very uncomfortable. My biggest concern was that I no longer saw my professional title, PTA, anywhere in the documents. It was as if we were being "written out" of the profession of Physical Therapy. Though there is some crossover, ATCs, exercise physiologists, etc, do not receive a Physical Therapy education. They are also not mentioned in our Code of Ethics. My hope is that this task force finds the current delivery system satisfactory. Sincerely, Melanie Cain, PTA, BS

      Posted by Melanie Cain -> >FUZBK on 11/7/2011 1:26 PM

    • Being that I am both a licensed PT and an ATC (and have been a PT aide in the past), I know what each practice knows, and I know that handing over the ability to bill for PT practices to those not formally educated and licensed in the practice of physical therapy could be a potential danger to those seeking physical therapy services. Our knowledge through education in physical therapy is specific to our profession and should not be looked at that anyone with a similar degree can do what we do (and do it safely and ethically). I went to PT school because I knew that my knowledge from my ATC education was very limited, and if I wanted to provide PT services I needed to get the correct education. I found that there was indeed a large gap between the two professions and the type of knowledge they encompass. I urge that we protect the physical therapy practice to be provided by only those specifically educated and licensed in physical therapy.

      Posted by Lisa Kolesar, DPT, ATC/L on 11/8/2011 1:24 AM

    • As a future PTA student currently enrolled in pre-requisite courses at my local state college, I find this information to be VERY disturbing.

      Posted by Rachel on 11/8/2011 7:30 PM

    • As a director of PT services I find it very troublesome that our own professional board would consider allowing the term physical therapy to be used by anyone other than an invidivdual licensed and trained in the art and science of Physical Therapy. Our state practice act here in Oklahoma does not allow anyone that is not a PT or PTA to hold themselves out as practicing physical therapy in order to keep other professionals from enroaching upon our turf and confusing the public. I am sure Oklahoma is not the only state that has this built into their practice act.

      Posted by David Haynes MS, PT, SCS, OCS, ATC, Cert.MDT on 11/17/2011 9:47 PM

    • As a student currently enrolled in a physical therapist assistant program, I am disheartened to hear that my profession could essentially be eliminated because of costs. There is a need for physical therapist assistants in rehabilitation and I certainly hope physical therapists and physical therapist assistants band together to express to the APTA why RC3-11 is a liability to the future of physical therapy.

      Posted by Courtney on 12/15/2011 11:37 AM

    • I certainly believe that as a profession we need to consistently examine our standards of care and delivery of service, but any initiatives by physical therapists to discredit or devalue the PTA in my opinion is initiated by those that may be having difficulties with their own inadequacies because their own patients can’t tell who is the PT and who is the PTA by the level of care being provided. Being in the profession 25 years there have been countless times that I’ve observed PTAs that were clearly more proficient in the delivery of care than the “supervising PT.” Why? Because the PTA probably came from a previous environment where the PT provided earned autonomy, education, direction, trust and support as opposed to restricting task delegation and opportunity for egotistical reasons. Now, the same PTA is working with a PT that thinks just because they completed the academic components and obtained a license they automatically qualify for a higher level of recognition or entitlement. That privilege is earned in the clinic…..over years! In my experience that is where conflict and perceived “infringement” arises. Do PTs really believe that they are going to be exposed to lower levels of opportunity at the hands of PTAs? My recommendation is that physical therapists concentrate on deterring their “fellow PTs” from prostituting their profession by going to work for physicians and catalyzing the attrition of independent physical therapy practice, entrepreneurial opportunity. The term “autonomy” as applied to PT was born within the vision of independent practice and business opportunity. Now that context of autonomy is dying a rapid death and it’s the PTs that are about to take it off the ventilator….not the PTA.

      Posted by Keith on 12/30/2011 10:35 PM

    • dowm with rc-311 i have been practicing as a pta for fifteen years in a variety of settings. Ifeel thatpatients will suffer under tese changes. I want to help in this fight!!! health care is about making the patient better, not how much profit we can make!

      Posted by wendyrose on 2/12/2012 2:12 PM

    • I have to decide whether to go forward or not with a PTA program. Should I go forward or not in the light of RC-311?

      Posted by dennis on 2/21/2012 2:11 AM

    • You are going to eliminate the PTA role and have others "trained" to do this work? Hey companies have fun getting sued by lawyers who are ready to swarm all over this idea where people aren't even licensed or trained to practice. Wait until all the liabilities set in. What are people thinking? Seriously. With the DPT program hard to obtain at 100k the field is already in demand. For business it is smarter to hire a PTA who is LICENSED. There is a bond for patient care between PTs and PTAs. They understand each other. There is no discrepancy here. Insurance companies need to realize the PT degree was once a bachelors. Instead of destroying the field why don't you make PTA a Four year degree???!!! Hellooooo???? Why is there such a big gap here? You grandfather the PTAs now and by 2015 you change it to a courtesy degree. Simple. Patients receive the same care from a PTA. If you were a patient which would you rather have? A person "trained" by a PT or an actual licensed individual with the right training AND trained by a PT?

      Posted by Jason on 6/3/2012 10:26 PM

    • Ps - for companies to pay less qualified individuals 15-20 an hour rather than 24-28 an hour for a licensed.... A licensed... A state licensed individual we are talking about here.... Does not make ANY sense for the care of our patients and future of the field. Bad... Bad...bad idea to eliminate PTA role.

      Posted by Jason on 6/3/2012 10:48 PM

    • As a BSN who had worked mainly in hospital but also in a variety of settings, I wish to thank the PTAs who provided therapy at the bedside. They were professional in demeanor, knowledge, safety and collaboration. I can see that if the PTAs are eliminated from hospital, therapy might fall to nurses and nurse aides who do not have the same level of training and rely on the PTAs for all the above reasons. No on RC 3-11!!

      Posted by Claire on 7/11/2012 7:22 PM

    • yikes. seems like a lot of fear of the future implications of this bill. here are my thoughts as a 3rd year DPT student: (1) PTA's are mentioned in RC-3 (2) PTA's provide tremendous value and will continue to do so, but that isn't to say that others may not be able to provide value as well (3) Physical Therapy cannot be practiced by anyone as was suggested. Elements of physical therapy can be carried out by a variety of individuals, but physical therapists are the ones ultimately responsible and attributed for that care. Again, it only counts if a PT is supervising, which isn't that different than the current landscape, except with a more flexible overarching policy regarding extenders (4) Trust our extensive training, including ethics classes to do what is in the best interest of the patient. Even private practioners know better than to just hire the cheapest staff...that is a recipe for failure qualitatively, ethically and financially (since many folks in our profession seem to think that private practioners are only about money) (5) At the end of the day the PT is the one responsible both in today's landscape and under the language of RC-3.

      Posted by Christopher Wilson -> AIP[CH on 9/2/2012 8:11 PM

    • Thank you APTA PT's for throwing my 20 years of education, knowledge and expertise under the bus. By doing this they have shot themselves in the foot. In the effort to save money they will bring in people who do not have the proper education or knowledge to work under their license. This will intern discredit the occupation of Physical therapy altogether in the eyes of physicians and other clinician, not to mention our patients and clients. I think the better option would have been to have a BS requirement by PTAs than to take this path.

      Posted by Gwin Benjamin on 7/8/2018 5:20 PM

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