APTA's Strategic Plan is regularly revisited and updated as needed through an active and annual process.
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The American Physical Therapy Association (association) exists to improve the health and quality of life of individuals in society by advancing physical therapist practice.
Association Organizational Values
Association members and staff working on behalf of the association...
- are committed to excellence in practice, education, research, and advocacy;
- respect the dignity and differences of all individuals and commit to being a culturally competent and socially responsible association;
- lead with professionalism, integrity, and honesty; and,
- make decisions that reflect visionary thinking, innovation, collaboration, and accountability.
Association Envisioned Future
APTA Vision Sentence for Physical Therapy 2020 (HOD P06-00-24-35)
By 2020, physical therapy will be provided by physical therapists who are doctors of physical therapy, recognized by consumers and other health care professionals as the practitioners of choice to whom consumers have direct access for the diagnosis of, interventions for, and prevention of impairments, functional limitations, and disabilities related to movement, function, and health.
APTA Vision Statement for Physical Therapy 2020 (HOD P06-00-24-35)
Physical therapy, by 2020, will be provided by physical therapists who are doctors of physical therapy and who may be board-certified specialists. Consumers will have direct access to physical therapists in all environments for patient/client management, prevention, and wellness services. Physical therapists will be practitioners of choice in patients'/clients' health networks and will hold all privileges of autonomous practice. Physical therapists may be assisted by physical therapist assistants who are educated and licensed to provide physical therapist directed and supervised components of interventions.
Guided by integrity, life-long learning, and a commitment to comprehensive and accessible health programs for all people, physical therapists and physical therapist assistants will render evidence-based services throughout the continuum of care and improve quality of life for society. They will provide culturally sensitive care distinguished by trust, respect, and an appreciation for individual differences.
While fully availing themselves of new technologies, as well as basic and clinical research, physical therapists will continue to provide direct patient/client care. They will maintain active responsibility for the growth of the physical therapy profession and the health of the people it serves.
Effectiveness of Care
Goal 1: APTA will better enable physical therapists to consistently use best practice to improve
the quality of life of their patients and clients.
a. Increase the number of peer-reviewed clinical practice guidelines (CPGs).
b. Increase practitioner use of and adherence to best practice guidelines to reduce unwarranted variation in care and enhance patient and client outcomes.
c. Develop and integrate available patient data registries, including quality measures.
d. Explore alternative and innovative models of care delivery.
e. Promote the use of valid measures.
Patient- and Client- Centered Care Across the Lifespan
Goal 2: APTA will be the recognized leader in supporting physical therapists in the delivery of patient- and client-centered care across the lifespan.
a. Increase the prevalence of physical therapists providing prevention (primary, secondary, tertiary) and wellness services.
b. Promote implementation of innovative models of practice that target patient- and client-centered care.
c. Develop mechanisms to identify, prioritize, and address existing and emerging population-based health needs that will impact physical therapy.
d. Identify and address physical therapy supply and demand work force needs.
Professional Growth and Development
Goal 3: APTA will empower physical therapists to demonstrate and promote high standards of professional and intellectual excellence.
a. Model and promote key values and behaviors that embrace professionalism.
b. Explore and adopt innovative active learning opportunities that will enhance individual and collective
abilities to provide optimal, collaborative patient- and client-centered care.
c. Investigate the appropriate educational program(s) for the PTA.
d. Demonstrate and promote interprofessional and intraprofessional collaboration.
Value and Accountability
Goal 4: APTA will be the recognized leader in setting the standards for physical therapy service delivery and establishing and promoting the value of physical therapist practice to all stakeholders.
a. Advocate for appropriate administrative, legislative, and regulatory policies that demonstrate value, ensure safe and effective delivery, enhance access, and protect the integrity of the health care system.
b. Improve compliance with regulations, laws, and professional standards.
c. Advance payment systems that recognize the severity of patient condition and the intensity of interventions required; reflect the clinical reasoning, judgment, and decision-making of the physical therapist; and appropriately pay for the value of the services.
d. Define, advocate, and promote the role of the physical therapist in innovative and collaborative delivery models.