"Physical therapy is not a subspecialty of the medical profession and physical therapists are not medical doctors; we are a separate profession that provides a unique service that physicians are unable and untrained to provide."

Letter to the AMA from the APTA, Dec 2009

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

California to Take Action Against POPTs Physical Therapists

Three Major Developments in the California POPTS Battle

Development 1

Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Legal Opinion Confirms PTs Working in POPTS Arrangement are Subject to Discipline by the CA PT Board.

The CA Private Practice Group discovered this document posted on www.stoppopts.org, which confirms five other legal opinions, clarifying that it is illegal for physical therapists to work for a medical corporation. The DCA can apparently no longer keep the CA PT Board from bringing physical therapists into compliance with the law.

Quote from DCA Legal Affairs Opinion

"It is evident from the applicable statutes that the Physical Therapy Board of California has jurisdiction over physical therapists and is empowered to enforce obedience to its regulations and all statutes governing the corporate practice of physical therapy.  Consequently, it our opinion that a physical therapist may be subject to discipline by the Physical Therapy Board of California for providing professional physical therapy services as an employee of a professional corporation, other than a naturopathic doctor corporation."
Development 2

The CA Physical Therapy Board held its usual meeting yesterday. In light of this legal counsel opinion, they voted unanimously 5 yes,0 no, to begin the disciplinary process.

The first 153 physical therapists accused of working for POPTS, will now be investigated.

Finally, enforcement of the law begins. Those physical therapists working in POPTS clinics risk suspension or revocation of their license if they do not come into compliance with the law.

Development 3

On the legislative front, AB 783, which if passed would legalize POPTS, passed through the Assembly floor 51 yes, 0 No, and over a dozen abstentions. This in itself is a significant improvement. In 2009, when AB 1152 was voted on in the Assembly, there was unanimous approval. The next major stop is the Senate Business and Professions Committee, where a similar bill to AB 783 was soundly defeated in 2009.

It might be time for POPTS physical therapists to jump ship.

Get many more answers on May 19th, 2011 when the CA Private Practice Group will hold it’s meeting to update its members on POPTS and the future of physical therapy.

Sign up now – go to www.cppsig.com

The CA PPG Board of Directors 

**The California Private Practice Group is a special interest group of the California Physical Therapy Association.

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Tim Richardson, PT owns a private practice at Medical Arts Rehabilitation, Inc in Palmetto, Florida. The clinic website is at MedicalArtsRehab.com.

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