"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

Monday, February 4, 2013

Nurse Practitioners Seek More Authority in Florida

Ryan Grella, a physical therapist from the Tampa Bay area has brought to light this new article in the Tampa Bay Times: Nurse Practitioners Seek More Authority in Florida.

Ryan and I and several of our friends, peers and professional colleagues have discussions on Direct Access to Physical Therapy all the time. Here is Ryan's Letter to the Editor of the Tampa Bay Times:
"The nurse practitioner story in the Tampa Bay Times sheds further light on Florida’s antiquated healthcare laws, which are driven in part by highly funded medical organizations as well as physician lawmakers who have inherent conflicts of interest.  
The citizens of Florida deserve access to high quality evidence-based healthcare devoid of unnecessary rules and regulations.  
Presently anyone in this state can receive care from a speech therapist, occupational therapist, massage therapist, or personal trainer without physician oversight. Yet, state licensed doctors of physical therapy must refer their patients to a physician after 21 days.  
This provision exists under the veil of public safety despite overwhelming evidence of physical therapist competence and direct savings to the patient. The Florida Medical Association (FMA) is adamantly opposed to any legislation that would remove the 21-day provision.  
Should we be surprised?Apparently not.  You wouldn't expect the FMA to object to anything that changes the status quo.  
Physicians are now competitors for the patient’s valuable healthcare dollars. At some point however, nurses and physical therapists must ask the FMA and lawmakers, is it about the patient, or is it about the dollar?"
Ryan Grella, Physical Therapist

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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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Tim has implemented a computerized Clinical Decision Support (CDS) system in his clinic since 2006 that serves as a Reminder, Alerting, Prompting and Predicting CDS using evidence-based tests and measures.

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Consistent with the American Physical Therapy Association Vision Statement for Physical Therapy 2020, the American Physical Therapy Association supports exclusive physical therapist ownership and operation of physical therapy services.