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  • New York Times Publishes APTA Letter to Editor

    The New York Times August 14 issue included APTA's letter to the editor about how physical therapists can help women with vaginal pain. APTA submitted the letter, which also was published online, in response to an August 7 article titled "Persistence Is Key to Treating Sexual Pain."

    New Podcast Series to Focus on Telehealth in Physical Therapist Practice

    APTA has launched a new podcast series that will address physical therapists' practice in the realm of telehealth. The first podcast in the series provides an overview of telehealth and focuses on providing integumentary and wound management physical therapy rehabilitation services via telehealth. Harriett B. Loehne, PT, DPT, CWS, FACCWS, the recipient of the 2010 Georgia Partnership for TeleHealth Partner of the Year Award, shares her experiences with 2 telemedicine  systems—Real Time and Store-and-Forward—and how they have helped expand staff's advanced wound management knowledge in a manner that has been cost effective, timely, and efficient for patients and health care providers. 

    Alan Chong W. Lee, PT, DPT, PhD, CWS, GCS, associate professor of physical therapy at Mount St Mary's College, hosts the podcast. Loehne currently performs more consults via telemedicine than any other consultant in Georgia.  

    New in the Literature: Enhanced Medical Rehabilitation of Older Adults (J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2012 August 2. [Epub ahead of print])

    Higher intensity and patient engagement in the postacute rehabilitation setting is achievable, resulting in better functional outcomes for older adults, say authors of an article published online in Journal of the American Medical Directors Association.  

    Twenty-six older adults admitted from a hospital for postacute rehabilitation in a skilled nursing facility in St Louis, Missouri, participated in a randomized controlled trial of enhanced medical rehabilitation versus standard-of-care rehabilitation. Based on models of motivation and behavior change, enhanced medical rehabilitation is a set of behavioral skills for physical therapists and occupational therapists that increase patient engagement and intensity, with the goal of improving functional outcomes through a patient-directed, interactive approach; increased rehabilitation intensity; and frequent feedback to patients on their effort and progress.

    The authors assessed therapy intensity using the time that the patient was active in therapy sessions. Therapy engagement was assessed using the Rehabilitation Participation Scale. Functional and performance outcomes were measured using Barthel Index, gait speed, and 6-minute walk.

    Participants randomized to enhanced medical rehabilitation had higher intensity therapy and were more engaged in their rehabilitation sessions. They had more improvement in gait speed (improving from 0.08 to 0.38 m/s versus 0.08 to 0.22 m/s in standard of care) and 6-minute walk (from 73 to 266 feet versus 40 to 94 feet in standard of care), with a trend for better improvement of Barthel Index (+43 points versus +26 points in standard of care), compared with participants randomized to standard-of-care rehabilitation.

    APTA member Helen Host, PT, coauthored the article. 

    On-site Reviewers for PTA Programs Needed

    The Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) is seeking nominations for physical therapist assistant (PTA) on-site reviewers to evaluate accredited programs. While CAPTE always seeks individuals committed to the accreditation and peer review process it embodies, it now is looking specifically for PTA on-site review team members who are APTA members and currently work as PTA clinicians and for higher education administrators (eg, president, provost, vice president of academics or instruction, department or division chair) who are involved with an accredited PTA program at their institution. Interested PTAs can find additional information and requirements in this Call for On-site CAPTE Reviewers.