Join the American Heart Association, WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, and other leading health experts in kicking off American Heart Month February 1 at 5:30 pm-6:30 pm ET with a Webinar discussion on the state of women's heart health. Learn about the new Million Hearts campaign, a national initiative to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes over 5 years, and the latest advances in women's heart research.
National Wear Red Day is February 3.
Today, APTA submitted comments to the Department of Health and Health and Human Services (HHS) in response to its December 2011 guidance bulletin, the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight's (CCIIO) January 27 bulletin, and the Institute of Medicine's (IOM) report titled Essential Health Benefits: Balancing Coverage and Cost. IOM's report reiterates that the determination of essential health benefits (EHB) should be based on a national standard of evidence-based medicine divorced from politics and policymakers' influence. Under the Affordable Care Act, rehabilitative and habilitative services must be offered in the states' affordable health care exchanges as a mandatory benefit in the basic health plan. HHS' secretary is tasked with further defining each mandatory category of services. APTA and other stakeholders have urged the secretary not to overly define the categories so that practitioners have the flexibility to provide both the type and frequency of care that is medically necessary for the individual.
Under HHS' intended approach, states have flexibility to use an existing health plan as a "benchmark" for the items and services included in the EHB package, choosing from among these 4 plans:
CCIIO provides a list of the products with the 3 largest enrollments in the small-group market in each state using data from HealthCare.gov.
Based on the states' ability to tailor the plans and consider adding optional services or increased numbers of visits, it is important that APTA's state chapters continue to educate and foster relationships with their state agencies to ensure that rehabilitative services are optimized in the plans.
The Nominating Committee Report for the 2012 election cycle now is available on the House of Delegates Community. The report provides nomination statistics and lists nomination information for members recommended for a national office position if they have provided written consent for publication.
Contact Peyton Zeek with questions.
Here's a great way to enhance your connection to APTA: Use the official APTA member logo on your marketing communications.
As an added member benefit, APTA's member logo now is available for members to use on promotional items such as office stationery, note pads, business cards, fliers and brochures, Web pages of the individual member or the member's company, print ads, and telephone book listings.
Use of the association's member logo helps reinforce your individual commitment to the profession and to the principles and standards set forth in APTA's Code of Ethics for the Physical Therapist and Standards of Ethical Conduct for the Physical Therapist Assistant.
If you have questions about use of the logo, contact APTA's Public Relations Department at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800/999-2782 ext 3248.
A new resource from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) explains the A1C test to diagnose type 2 diabetes and prediabetes, and to monitor blood glucose levels of people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
The A1C Test and Diabetes fact sheet covers a wide range of information, including:
Originally, the A1C test had been recommended only for monitoring diabetes. But in 2009, an international committee of experts convened by the American Diabetes Association, International Diabetes Federation, and European Association for the Study of Diabetes recommended expanding the use of the test to include diagnosing type 2 diabetes and prediabetes. Because the A1C test does not require fasting, experts hope more people will be checked for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.
The standard blood glucose tests for diagnosing type 2 diabetes and prediabetes—the fasting plasma glucose test and the oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT)—measure blood glucose in a person who has not eaten anything for at least 8 hours. The OGTT also measures blood glucose 2 hours after a person drinks a glucose-containing beverage. To confirm positive results, people should return on a different day to repeat the tests. The A1C test should also be repeated to confirm a diagnosis.
Physical therapists who manage patients with diabetes can find APTA's Pocket Guide: Physical Fitness and Type 2 Diabetes on the Physical Fitness for Special Populations Web page.
Because 2 in 5 adults (42%) with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are inactive, public health initiatives need to address the lack of motivation to exercise and promote the benefits of physical activity in this population, say authors of an article published online in Arthritis Care & Research.
The researchers analyzed data on 176 patients with RA, 18 years of age or older, enrolled in a randomized controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of an intervention promoting physical activity. The team evaluated pre-intervention data for inactivity that was defined as no sustained 10-minute periods of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity during a week. They also assessed the relationships between inactivity and modifiable risk factors, such as motivation for physical activity, obesity, and pain.
Results show that 42% of RA patients were inactive—participating in no moderate-to-vigorous physical activity periods of at least 10 minutes during a 7-day period of objective activity monitoring. Researchers found that 53% of study participants lacked strong motivation for physical activity and 49% lacked strong beliefs in the benefits of physical activity. These 2 modifiable risk factors account for 65% of excess inactivity in this study group.
While previous research relied on self-reported physical activity measures, the strength of the current study lies in the use of accelerometers—a device used to measure acceleration and movement—to objectively assess physical activity in participants, say the authors.
The National Institute for Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases funded this study.
Be a part of this important time in the history of your profession and join your colleagues for the 2012 Federal Advocacy Forum April 22-24. At the event, you will hear from decision makers on Capitol Hill, learn to effectively communicate with your elected officials, receive an update on the legislative and regulatory issues affecting the physical therapy profession, and lobby your members of Congress on behalf of your profession.
The programming for the 2012 Federal Advocacy Forum will begin April 22 with an evening reception. April 23 will be dedicated to advocacy programming and preparation for your hill visits. The event will conclude with the opportunity for you to take your message directly to your members of Congress April 24.
The number of CEUs earned for this event is pending. In order to claim CEU credit, you must attend the live event and complete the online posttest with at least 70% accuracy. The online posttest will be available on APTA's Learning Center by April 24.
For a full agenda and more information about this event, visit the Federal Advocacy Forum Web page. APTA encourages you to get the word out to friends and colleagues and bring someone along with you. Register now and bring your voice to Capitol Hill on behalf of your profession.
This year's Federal Advocacy Forum will be held in conjunction with a larger event, APTA's Leadership Forum, which integrates APTA's Board of Directors meeting, the Leadership Symposium for New Component President and Executive Teams, and the Federal Advocacy Forum. Participation at other events is not required to attend the Federal Advocacy Forum.