Need confirmation of physical therapy's role in education, prevention and treatment of concussion in youth sports? Would an invitation from the White House do?
APTA President Paul A. Rockar Jr, PT, DPT, MS, and APTA staff were on hand for a May 29 gathering at the East Wing of the White House during which President Barack Obama announced new public and private sector commitments to increase awareness of concussions in youth sports, and to encourage more research into the topic. APTA was among the groups invited to attend the event.
The association has a long history of support for concussion education and research, and shared its "planned commitment to action" with the White House and summit attendees. That commitment includes member education; the development of multi-disciplinary treatment standards; interprofessional collaboration to raise awareness; the development of new prevention, identification, and rehabilitation tools; and the creation and dissemination of concussion-related resources for parents and coaches.
APTA has also advocated for policy changes and guidelines on the state and federal level, and has worked with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the issue of concussions. Two APTA members serve on the CDC Pediatric Traumatic Brain Injury Guideline Workgroup.
"Physical therapists provide a unique contribution to the concussion care management team, particularly in the areas of balance and vestibular evaluation and rehabilitation," said Rockar in an APTA news release. "We continue our commitment to research, education, prevention, education, and treatment. We are honored today to be invited by the White House to participate in this summit and look forward to future work with other stakeholders involved in addressing this important issue."
Check out APTA's practice-focused resources on concussion, including a TBI webpage, a series of podcasts, a PT's guide to concussions, online learning opportunities on when to return to sport, and information on managing concussions with an interprofessional team. Members can also access evidence-based practice research through PTNow.
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