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  • NIH Funded Post-Acute Care Study Needs PTs

    A National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded study is looking for physical therapists (PTs) with expertise with older adults in a post-acute care setting. Participation in the research, being conducted by the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, will be compensated.

    Selected PTs would join a team of physicians, nurses, and social workers to review case summaries on an interactive website to determine post-acute care referrals. In order to qualify, PTs must have at least 5 years of recent experience caring for adults or conducting research in discharge planning, acute or transitional care, geriatrics, rehabilitation, hospice, long term care, or home care. Participants must also have an understanding of the transitional care needs of patients discharged from acute care to other levels of care.

    PTs from all parts of the country are needed. More information on the research, set to begin in winter of 2014, can be obtained by contacting the program by December 13, 2013.

    Patient Satisfaction May Be Related to Staff Work Relationships

    A new survey tool focused on relationships among members of a clinic staff is not only holding up to measurement scrutiny, but is indicating a direct correlation between the quality of staff working relationships and patient satisfaction.

    The study appears in the latest issue of The Annals of Family Medicine, and describes the development of the Work Relationship Scale (WRS), a 19-item questionnaire focused on "the perceived quality of work relationships" among clinic staff. Questionnaires were administered to all staff in 17 Veterans Administration (VA) primary care clinics in south and central Texas. A total of 457 staff completed the survey, with 247 staff members participating in semistructured interviews. Statistical reviews confirmed the validity of the WRS as a measurement tool.

    When researchers compared the questionnaire results to the results of the VA Survey of Healthcare Experiences of Patients (SHEP) for the same clinics, they found a significant correlation between high WRS scores and patients' positive ratings in the areas of "overall rating of personal doctor/nurse" and "overall rating of health care." The authors wrote that "Clinic member relationships appear to have a significant impact on patient perceptions of care and should be assessed as part of efforts to improve delivery."

    And what makes for a high-scoring clinic? According to the report, "considerable differences emerged in patterns of communication and relating" between the low and high-scoring clinics, with low scorers more likely to rely heavily on e-mail for communication, and high scorers tending to use more face-to-face communication. High-scoring clinics also demonstrated a level of trust and ease in communication throughout all staff roles, while low-scoring clinics reported "reservations" about relationships with less directly-related staff and upper level management.

    PTs Helping Philippines Recover From Haiyan

    Physical therapists (PTs) from outside the Philippines have arrived on the islands to join their peers and other medical professionals in relief efforts in the wake of typhoon Haiyan. According to a report from the World Confederation for Physical Therapy (WCPT), some of the first PTs on the scene were part of 2 UK-based teams, and more are expected to join the efforts as other organizations arrive in the country.

    The WCPT report stated that the PTs joining the relief work are attached to a UK-based international trauma response team, with Handicap International readying teams of emergency specialists—including rehabilitation professionals—to join the providers the organization had in the Philippines before the disaster.

    According to USA Today, the area hardest hit by the typhoon is in dire need of adequate medical facilities and professionals, and relief is just now beginning to arrive more than a week after the event. Suggestions for how to donate to and help relief efforts can be found on several websites, including this Huffington Post report.

    UIW Library Renamed in Honor of Geneva Johnson

    Physical therapy leader and Catherine Worthingham Fellow Geneva Johnson, PhD, PT, FAPTA was recognized last week when the University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) School of Physical Therapy renamed its library in her honor. The new Geneva R. Johnson Library will include her own holdings as well as materials being received from Case Western Reserve University in Ohio, where she served as the program's first director of the master's program.

    Dedication ceremonies took place on November 8 at the library, located on the UIW campus in San Antonio, Texas. Johnson has been an APTA leader for many years, having served in numerous positions including as a member of the CAPTE review panel, the association's history committee, and in official capacities at the Iowa, Texas, Georgia, and Ohio chapters. In her work as a physical therapy educator, Johnson's many contributions were instrumental in reshaping curriculum and refining clinical supervision.

    In its online announcement of the library dedication, the UIW School of Physical Therapy described Johnson as an inspirational figure in the profession. The posting quoted Johnson as saying that "physical therapy is the work of our hands, of our head, and of our heart," and stated that the library in her name will help students "incorporate this philosophy in their personal and professional lives."