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ADVANCE Perspective: Physical Therapy & Rehab Medicine

Coming Up NEXT -- The 2015 APTA Annual Conference

Published May 29, 2015 5:17 PM by Brian Ferrie

As many ADVANCE readers are likely aware, the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) last year rebranded its traditional "Annual Conference & Exposition" as simply "NEXT". The APTA website stated at the time, "It's a name change, but more than that it's a commitment to making APTA's June conference about looking into the future of physical therapy. ‘NEXT' isn't an abbreviation, but it does stand for something: It's a name thematic of where this conference and profession are headed."

From June 3-6, NEXT 2015 will be held in National Harbor, Md., a stone's throw away from Washington, D.C. According to APTA: "NEXT is the leading-edge event for physical therapy professionals with trend-setting programming, innovative content, and exclusive access to the profession's forward thinkers. This year NEXT coincides with PT Day on Capitol Hill, giving you the chance to rally on Washington with your peers and meet with your elected representatives."

PT Day on Capitol Hill is expected to include more than 1,000 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and students on June 4. Attendees will first rally by the Capitol before participating in scheduled meetings with their elected representatives in Congress, providing "a special opportunity to advocate for the physical therapy profession and the patients it serves!" exclaims the APTA website.

Aside from this signature event, NEXT will continue to offer hallmarks of previous annual conferences, including the 46th McMillan Lecture (presented by Lynn Snyder-Mackler, PT, ScD, ATC, SCS, FAPTA), and the 20th John H.P. Maley Lecture (offered by Gad Alon, PT, PhD). In addition, the popular Oxford Debate returns, with this year's topic "Mind Your Business" exploring whether all physical therapists should demonstrate comprehensive business management and marketing principles as an entry-level skill in all settings. Finally, the keynote speaker will be Billie Jean King, a Hall of Fame female tennis player who was named one of the "100 Most Important Americans of the 20th Century" by LIFE Magazine.

For prospective attendees unfamiliar with National Harbor, the location's official website offers this description: "Perched on the historic Potomac River, National Harbor is a unique, all-in-one destination and all-American tradition, offering unrivaled shopping, dining and attractions and a roster of year-round, family-friendly events. Featuring expansive views from the riverbank -- and from 180 feet up on The Capital Wheel, the waterfront's newest iconic draw -- National Harbor combines an approachable, resort-like personality with a singular, dynamic experience for local residents and visitors alike. With more than 10 million annual visitors, there's simply nowhere else on the Eastern Seaboard you'll find this mix of things to do, see and experience."

You can count on ADVANCE to be there covering all the action at NEXT, reporting on the sights and sounds of National Harbor, Capitol Hill and the APTA. Stay tuned to our Facebook page, Twitter handle, and of course traditional website for informative blog posts, quotes from influential leaders and insightful images. Will you be attending NEXT too? What are your hopes and expectations for the conference?

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