Why Nothing Will Change at the APTA
In my last blog, I described my concerns that nothing will change with the APTA, expensive consultant group or not. I expect them to continue with the same message but repackage with new words. I see subtlety in their future. The reason I don't expect change is simple. The same people will still be in charge.
No one is stepping down from a leadership position. No one with new ideas is coming into the fold. Therefore the ideas haven't changed. APTA leadership has an agenda. That agenda hasn't changed and won't. The approach might be different but the goal is the same. It might work for a little while.
All we'll have to do is follow the money. It will go to the same places through the same people. I've heard enough updates from those people to know the general strategy. They get limited face time with lawmakers so keep to the talking points. Those talking points aren't going to be any different. They could bring up other issues but won't.
What those leaders fail to realize is even if they got everything immediately, nothing would change. It wouldn't be a reimbursement issue or a practice act issue. It wouldn't be conflict with physicians. It is our consumers. Consumers of therapy services don't see the value of therapy. They go because the physician tells them to go. If they're in a facility, they're a captive audience.
I've worked in numerous facilities. Most of the patients don't really want to go to therapy, or if they do, only on their terms. Yesterday I overheard one woman complaining that therapy comes whenever they want and takes you away. You can't watch your TV shows. You can't take a nap. You miss your physicians when they come.
If the general public thought physical therapy was valuable and started demanding better access, better reimbursement and coverage for equipment, more time in rehab facilities, then things would change. If all the lobbying groups for seniors got together and pushed for those things, there would be changes. It doesn't happen because no one sees the value of doing so.