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  • Coming Soon to a District Near You: Lots of Advocacy Opportunities

    Some of the best opportunities for physical therapy advocacy don't happen on Capitol Hill, but on a legislator's home turf—and now is a great time to prepare by requesting a meeting, and maybe even shooting your own patient or client video, according to the APTA advocacy team.

    The US House of Representatives will be in recess from May 12 to 16, and the Senate's recess is set for May 26 to 30. Recently, APTA sent out a notice to members reminding them of the upcoming opportunities to schedule in-person meetings.

    One great advocacy suggestion: a short video of a patient telling his or her compelling story, directly addressing the legislator about the importance of physical therapy. It's a strategy that worked for Eva Norman, PT, DPT, CEEAA, who shot a video of her patient the Rev. Marguerite Voekel, and showed it to Rep Keith Ellison (D-MN) during the 2014 APTA Advocacy Forum in Washington, DC. Rep Ellison was so taken by the video that he shot a personal video response to Voekel on the spot.

    The ATPA advocacy team offers some tips on video statements:

    • Keep it brief – 90 seconds or less
    • Keep it focused – have your patient or client describe his or her experience with physical therapy
    • Respect privacy rules – be sure to have your patient or client sign a consent form before making the video

    Not sure where to start? Visit APTA's Advocacy Involvement Opportunities webpage or contact APTA and we will help you start to build a relationship with your legislators. If you're interested in attending a local fundraiser, contact the PT-PAC. PT-PAC provides funds to send APTA members to local events for members of Congress who support the physical therapy profession.

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