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Once licensed, physical therapists (PTs) are free to practice in the setting of their choice, per their personal and professional interests. With that privilege, however, comes the responsibility of meeting current practice requirements. Consider the following scenario, in which a PT questions the need to possess a certain skill.

Dragged Into the 21st Century

Eleanor has been a physical therapist (PT) for more than 40 years and has worked in the home health setting for the past quarter-century. Her favorite part of the job is the opportunity each and every week to help people regain function and optimal mobility within their home environment. There are many things about her practice setting that she appreciates as an employee, too—the independence, the flexibility, and, frankly, insulation from wider changes in the profession that strike her as sometimes being detrimental to patients and clients, or simply faddish and of dubious value.

Granted, documentation has become much more detailed and time-consuming over the years—as it has in every practice setting. It dismays Eleanor, too, that the health care system increasingly sends people home from hospitalization and rehabilitation "sicker and quicker." At the same time, however, she doesn't face the kinds of productivity demands that so often seem to burden her colleagues in other settings. Eleanor appreciates the fact that she treats just 1 patient at a time, sets her own schedule, and won't be called on the carpet should traffic snarls delay her arrival at a residence.

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