Can’t Seem to Face Up to the Facts? Try This Psycho(metric) Killer Blog

Choosing appropriate tests and measures is a crucial component of evidence-based practice. But not all measurements are reliable—and even when they are, the test or measure might not have validity for certain uses or types of patients.

Reliable? Valid? That’s where psychometrics come in, via the PTNow blog.

The latest PTNow Blog takes readers through the third installment of its primer to understanding how tests and measures are tested and measured by tackling validity, a multifaceted concept that aims to find out if a given measure is measuring what it’s supposed to, how well, and for which populations.

Full story new blog for PT facts at APTA

Innovative Physical Therapy Models Chosen for Further APTA Support

Following a rigorous review that included a “Shark Tank” like workshop and critique in May. APTA has announced the finalists in its Innovation 2.0 initiative. Through the program, APTA will provide funding and in-kind services over a 12-month period to help advance these innovative models of care delivery that highlight the value of physical therapist services.

In return, APTA will be able to access model data that potentially helps the association develop and disseminate templates and other resources that enable members throughout the country to promote the impact of physical therapy in the emerging health care environment—a strategic priority of the association.

Full story of PT models for support at APTA

APTA Member Benefit: Rent Some Wheels for Summer Travel

If you’re planning a long road trip this summer, you might be more comfortable, and save money, by leaving the family car at home and renting a vehicle. Every family, and every family’s car, is different, but here are some things to consider, good and bad:

  • There’s no wear-and-tear on your car when it’s home in the garage.
  • A late-model rental car may get better gas mileage than your car.
  • A late-model rental may be more reliable on a long trip.
  • Getting to the rental office for pick up and drop off may be inconvenient.
  • Renting a larger, more comfy car than you normally drive could offer needed luggage space and leg room.

Full story on summer travel tips at APTA

Yanni Anyone? Headbanging Linked to Brain Injury, Whiplash

It turns out that so-called heavy metal “headbangers” do just that, and violently enough to occasionally result in brain injury, whiplash, and other problems.

The July 5 issue of The Lancet includes a letter to the editor that describes treatment of a subdural hematoma in a 50-year-old man who presented with a worsening headache that had been going on for 2 weeks. He had an unremarkable medical history and denied substance abuse.

What he did mention was that just before his headache began, he attended a concert by Motorhead, a seminal speed metal band. And like many others in the audience, he spent much of the concert headbanging, which letter author Ariyan Pirayesh Islamian, MD, describes as “a contemporary dance form consisting of abrupt flexion-extension movements of the head to the rhythm of rock music, most commonly seen in the heavy metal genre.”

Full story of heavy metal headbanging and brain injury at Science Daily

Rise in Obesity More About Inactivity Than Caloric Intake

It’s no news that Americans have become more obese during the past 15 years, but a new study adds an interesting perspective—the dramatic gains may be almost entirely due to lack of physical activity, and not an increase in caloric intake.

In an article e-published ahead of print in the American Journal of Medicine, researchers examined data from National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES) administered between 1988 and 2010. Much of what they discovered about rates of obesity, overweight, and abdominal obesity have been well-substantiated, but some twists to the story were uncovered when researchers looked at these data in terms of caloric intake and levels of physical activity.

Full story of inactivity and obesity rise at APTA

CMS Criticized Over Rate of Improper Payments

A recently issued congressional report offers a grim assessment of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service’s (CMS) attempts to curb improper payments, calling them largely ineffective “pay and chase policies” that provide no reason for recovery audit contractors (RACs) to stop improper payments before they happen. In fact, the bipartisan report, from the Senate Special Committee on Aging argues that the RAC incentive structure “could be viewed as an incentive to keep improper payment rates high.”

While other parts of the US government have dramatically reduced their rates of improper payments since 2010, the report states, CMS has experienced an increase, to just over 10% of the $604 billion spent in 2013, “the highest improper payment rate of the past 5 years.”

Full story of Improper CMS payments at APTA

Physical Therapy a Good Fit at Bloggers Convention

Don’t be surprised if the next health and wellness blog you read seems a bit more attuned to physical therapy.

APTA exhibited at Fit Blogging’14, a national conference of nearly 300 health, fitness, and wellness bloggers from across the country, held in Savannah, Georgia, June 26-29. Sixteen volunteers from the Physical Therapy Association of Georgia (PTAG) offered hands-on—and feet-on—experiences to the bloggers by conducting screenings on laptop posture and treadmill running gait. The volunteers also took time to educate the writers about the role that physical therapy plays in reducing injury risk and safely maximizing performance.

Full story of physical therapy for blogging at APTA

From the House of Delegates: PTAs, ‘Early Career’ Individuals Focus of Membership Efforts

APTA will have an opportunity to further enrich involvement from both physical therapist assistants (PTAs) and early-career physical therapists (PTs) and PTAs, now that the APTA House of Delegates (House) has approved efforts to increase the value of membership for both groups.

In separate motions approved at the 2014 session of the House June 9-11 in Charlotte, North Carolina, delegates voted to create plans for increasing the value of APTA membership for the PTA and to “explore new and innovative ways to increase membership recruitment and retention of early-career individuals,” defined as PTs and PTAs practicing within their first 5 years after graduation.

Full story of early career in PTA’s at APTA

From the House of Delegates: APTA Has a Role in Strengthening PT Education

If physical therapy wants to truly embrace its vision of transforming society, the profession will need to be equipped with a diverse, well-educated workforce comfortable with innovation and capable of working across disciplines. It’s an idea that’s as fundamental as it is complex, and one that the 2014 House of Delegates (House) supported through several education-related motions passed at its most recent session June 9–11 in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The motions approved by the House included “Promoting Excellence in Physical Therapist Professional Education” (RC 12-14), a position that spells out the association’s commitment to educational program quality, and its expectation that physical therapists (PTs) who teach in and oversee these programs share in this concern for quality.

Full story of strengthening PT education at APTA

From the House of Delegates: ‘Friend to Physical Therapy’ Michael J. Axe Named Honorary APTA Member

By unanimous vote, orthopedic surgeon Michael J. Axe, MD, became an honorary APTA member during the 2014 House of Delegates, June 9-11 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Called a “friend to physical therapy” in the resolution for his membership, Axe was recognized for his extensive contributions to rehabilitation research and his team approach that includes physical therapists’ diagnostics in sports medicine and patient and client care, according to the support statement accompanying the motion. Axe became the 41st honorary member of the association [RC 19-14].

“He recognizes that surgery, his specialty, is just 1 component of the total picture of rehabilitation,” Delaware Delegate Cathy Ciolek, PT, DPT, GCS, said on the House floor in presenting the motion.

Full story on the honorary APTA member at APTA