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  • TBI, Chronic Pain Present Challenges During PTSD Treatment

    A new report from the Institute of Medicine examines the treatment needs of service members and veterans who have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and how certain comorbidities can affect treatment for PTSD.

    The report's authors classify the conditions that are most likely to interfere with effective PTSD-specific treatments, and whose treatment should be integrated into a comprehensive treatment program for PTSD, into 3 categories: psychiatric; medical, which includes chronic pain, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and amputation; and psychosocial. They note that the "prevalence of co-occurring psychiatric and medical conditions and psychosocial issues differs among the varied cohorts and subpopulations of service members and veterans …  and that the treatment needs of different groups will be different."

    In addition, the report examines the effect of PTSD on long-term health outcomes, including cardiovascular disease, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, and diabetes mellitus.

    Of the service members and veterans who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan and screened positive for PTSD symptoms, about 40% have received a referral for additional evaluation or treatment, and of those referred, about 65% go on to receive treatment, the report says. 

    Earlier this year, APTA was invited by the Office of the First Lady to participate in the Joining Forces Initiative—a comprehensive national effort to mobilize all sectors of society to give the nation's service members and their families the opportunities and support they have earned. As a provider that specializes in treating injuries that affect a vast number of returning service members and veterans, APTA is uniquely positioned to help ensure its practitioners have the best, most up-to-date information on TBI, PTSD, and postcombat depression.

    Read about APTA's commitment to the initiative, and access educational and advocacy resources on the management of wounded service members, on APTA's Joining Forces webpage. 

    Move Forward Brand Ads Running On SiriusXM Radio This Week

    The Olympics are just around the corner, and APTA is taking the opportunity to promote the physical therapist's role in helping athletes of all abilities maintain a mobile and active lifestyle. Be sure to listen for APTA's Move Forward radio ads running this week on SiriusXM radio leading up to the Olympic Games. The ads, part of APTA's ongoing branding campaign, are running all week on the following channels: SiriusXM Stars (includes numerous shows such as Rosie O'Donnell and TMZ); CNN; MSNBC; CNBC; Oprah Radio; and Martha Stewart Living Radio. Listen to the ads through APTA's website.   

    APTA Improves 'Extra' Features Based on Member Feedback

    In response to initial member feedback, APTA has made some navigational adjustments to its inaugural issue of PT in Motion Extra—a new complement to APTA's monthly member magazine, PT in Motion. An instructions page will now help you navigate through the issue, and arrows guiding you within and between articles have been revised to be more intuitive. Other responses to the survey at the end of the issue indicate that the most popular article among readers was "Robotic Devices Help Patients Walk, Reach." 

    Learn the Essentials: Register Today for Post-acute Care Compliance Seminars

    Recent policy changes and new federal regulations could have serious implications for members of the physical therapy profession who offer services in home health and inpatient rehabilitation settings, and in skilled nursing facilities.

    APTA's 2-day post-acute care compliance seminar will provide essential information to physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and their administrative staff that can be used to improve practices and ensure compliance with federal regulations and laws.

    Participants will be able to meet and talk with nationally known experts about documentation, patient assessment and classification, compliance with Medicare regulations, and emerging issues in health care reform.

    Seating is limited. Register now to reserve your place at the October 12-13 seminar in Charlotte, North Carolina, at the Hyatt House Charlotte City Center, or the November 9-10 seminar in Dallas, Texas, at The Adolphus Hotel. For registration and course information, visit APTA's Learning Center.

    Information and Advocacy Resources Available on Essential Health Benefits

    APTA's Essential Health Benefits (EHB) webpage provides an overview of this new benefit package, established under the Affordable Care Act, which ensures that certain health plans offered in the state Health Insurance Exchanges (exchanges) provide a baseline of coverage, benefits, and services to their enrollees.  

    Most health plans that will be offered in exchanges, with some exceptions, must cover 10 categories of benefits in order to be certified and offered in the exchanges. Of particular interest to physical therapists is the rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices category. Although rehabilitative services will be mandatory services in most Qualified Health Plans, states will most likely impose annual visit limits, caps, or other restrictions for therapy services as current employer-sponsored plans do. Therefore, it is imperative that physical therapists continue to educate state legislators, state policy makers, and consumers of the value, benefits, and cost savings of physical therapy services.

    Find background information on essential health benefits, a map of Medicaid and exchanges coverage by state, resource for state and chapter advocacy efforts, and more on this 1-stop resource page.   

    2013 HH PPS Highlights Now Available

    Details of the proposed rule for the 2013 home health prospective payment system (HH PPS) are available in a new highlights document on APTA's Medicare Payment and Policies for Home Health webpage. Find out how the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposes to update payments, modify the physician face-to-face requirement, and implement new therapy coverage requirements regarding functional reassessments. The summary also outlines changes that CMS proposes to the HH PPS grouper, updates to quality reporting, and revisions to requirements and sanctions for compliance and noncompliance for home health agencies regarding state survey and certification.

    Foundation Annual Report Available Online

    Check out highlights from last year, read a message from the president, and view a Legacy Gala video in the Foundation for Physical Therapy's 2011 Annual Report. The report also includes information on the Scientific Review Committee, grant and scholarship awardees, Foundation service awards, and donors.