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  • APTA Named 'Best in Business'

    APTA is not only making a national impact—it's making a difference in the local community and helping its employees stay healthy. And now the association has earned a significant recognition for those efforts.

    APTA was recently named "Best in Business" by the Alexandria, Virginia, Chamber of Commerce, an annual award that recognizes a local business that combines excellence in operations with a commitment to the Alexandria community. APTA originally was nominated for the award in the “large organization” category but took home the overall award among a field of 23 nominated businesses.

    APTA’s submission highlighted the level of engagement among APTA's members, its solid financial operations, and its efforts in the ongoing battle against the opioid epidemic—particularly it's #ChoosePT opioid awareness campaign. At the local level, APTA engaged with the community through its cosponsorship of the Chamber's annual disability awareness awards and women in leadership initiatives.

    Helping to strengthen APTA 's nomination were multiple initiatives stemming from its APTAServe program, a staff-driven effort that encourages local, national, and even international volunteerism by APTA employees. Those efforts have included blood drives, foodbank and school supply collections, and participation in the "Miracles Baseball League," a program that enables athletes with physical and intellectual disabilities to play baseball by pairing them with a volunteer. At a national level, APTA staff worked with volunteers to organize a Special Olympics FUNfitness screening and participated in "Shoes4Kids" drives. This year 2 APTA staff even traveled outside the US to engage in service by joining volunteers from MoveTogether to build, equip, and operationalize a new physical therapy clinic in San Pedro Sacatepequez, Guatemala.

    "This award is a recognition of what APTA can do when we combine an energized and engaged membership with careful financial stewardship and a staff that embraces the transformative values of the physical therapy profession," said APTA CEO Justin Moore, PT, DPT. "We have a lot to celebrate and be proud of as we finish out 2018 and move toward the new year and next century for APTA."

    The association's nomination also highlighted APTAFit, an employee health and wellness program that offers health-related services to staff, from healthy cooking workshops to individual consultations with health professionals to identify and achieve individual employee wellness goals.

    The Chamber of Commerce honor isn't the first major award APTA received in 2018. Earlier this year, the association earned separate national recognitions from the American Society for Association Executives—a Gold Circle award for its member renewal efforts, and a Power of A gold award for its collaborative and successful efforts to stop the cap on payment for therapy services under Medicare.

    CSM Delivers: Pain Science and the Challenge of Opioids

    Addressing the opioid crisis means not only steering health care's approach to pain treatment away from drugs but fostering a better understanding of pain itself. There's no time to lose.

    The 2019 APTA Combined Sections Meeting, set for January 23-26 in downtown Washington, DC, will deliver thought-provoking content on pain and opioids at a crucial time. Check out these suggestions, and find other relevant programming by searching the CSM programming page.

    Pain Talks: Conversations With Pain Science Leaders on the Future of the Field
    Join some of the most influential leaders in the field of pain science and rehabilitation for a discussion of the history of pain rehabilitation and how they personally became interested in the field, followed by an exchange on the current state of research on pain and its translation into clinical practice. The audience will be able to submit questions via text or email to the moderator for individual or panel discussion. Friday, January 25, 8:00 am–10:00 am.

    Opioid Issues in Athletes
    Opioid analgesics are the second most abused drug in the United States, with nearly half of students in seventh through twelfth grade having been prescribed these narcotics. These youth typically are athletes recovering from an injury or surgery—sometimes with devastating results. Find out about national efforts to address this issue, and hear the story of one athlete's journey from injury to addiction, and his long road back to health. Thursday, January 24, 8:00 am–10:00 am.

    Remapping Neuroplasticity and Pain in the Clinic: A Case Series Session
    There's growing evidence that graded motor imagery (GMI) can be used clinically to help desensitize a hypersensitive nervous system and provide hope for patients who are "too hot to handle." Body maps can be retrained within minutes through GMI, including normalizing laterality, motor imagery, mirror therapy, sensory discrimination, sensory integration, and more. Learn from published case studies and case series showcasing how brief GMI interventions can be readily applied in real-life clinics and result in immediate changes, thus accelerating recovery in people struggling with persistent pain. Saturday, January 26, 8:00 am–10:00 am.

    Interprofessional Pain Management for Older Adults With Cognitive Impairment
    Patients with cognitive impairment have difficulty or inability to communicate pain and discomfort because of cognitive, developmental, or physiologic issues, which is a major barrier to adequate pain assessment and achieving success in pain management interventions. This session is designed to help you respond to that challenge. You'll enhance your skills in recognizing pain in this population, identifying deficits and solutions through standardized tests and measures, and using interprofessional practice to improve outcomes. Saturday, January 26, 11:00 am–1:00 pm.

    Register for CSM by midnight ET on Wednesday, December 5 to grab advanced discounts and your chance to win 1 of 2 $500 in VISA gift cards.

    CSM Delivers: Students and Early-Career PTs and PTAs

    You don't have to look very far to find an article that lists "physical therapy" as a hot, in-demand career. That's good news for students and newly minted physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapist assistants (PTAs), but it's also a challenge to the profession to ensure that those joining its ranks are prepared for and energized about their futures.

    The 2019 APTA Combined Sections Meeting, set for January 23-26 in downtown Washington, DC, will offer several sessions of particular interest to students, educators, and others interested in preparing the next generation of professionals. Here are a few suggestions.

    Future Momentum: Pushing Limits on Simulation to Maximize Student Preparation
    What's the state of simulation-based education in preparing PT and PTA students for the dynamic, fast-paced arena of acute and critical care physical therapy? How can faculty and clinicians leverage this technology to maximize its potential? Experience lively discussion from an expert panel of acute care physical therapist academic faculty as they debate and challenge our existing evidence base regarding simulation-based education to prepare the next generation of PTs and PTAs. Friday, January 25, 8:00 am–10:00 am.

    Competency-Based Education: Exploring Opportunities for Our Future
    How well do our professional curricula and educational methods prepare our learners to meet current and future needs of patients, communities, and society? Competency-based education (CBE) theories have existed for decades but have only recently been applied to medical education, including the use of competencies, milestones, and entrustable professional activities, with a de-emphasis on the time required to demonstrate competence. This session will center on evaluation of ongoing development of CBE in medicine and its potential application to physical therapy. Friday, January 25, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm.

    From Lightly Salted to Seasoned: Implementing Early Professional Development
    The shift from student to PT or PTA can be dramatic for some. What can be done to maintain and even increase engagement in the profession during this critical time? Join panelists involved with the Florida Physical Therapy Association's Early Professional Special-Interest Group (SIG) to discuss their efforts to maintain membership engagement and facilitate the transition from new graduates to early-career professionals and further into association leadership. Thursday, January 24, 3:00 pm–5:00 pm.

    Register for CSM by October 24 to grab early bird discounts and your chance to win a roundtrip ticket to the conference.