Combined Sections Meeting, 2013 (#CSM2013 on Twitter) for the American Physical Therapy Association was held from January 21st through January 24th in San Diego, California – America’s Finest City (and my hometown!). During this massive conference, all the various sections, special interest groups, and members of the American Physical Therapy Association gathered to reconnect with old friends, make new ones, strengthen networks, and learn from the world’s greatest experts representing all specialties of Physical Therapy practice. Throughout this experience, I tried to jot down and tweet all the great lessons I learned and the favorite experiences I had for this blog post, however, I couldn't narrow things down enough – there was just too much good stuff. Therefore, I've decided to go with my Top 3 from my Top 3 favorite categories during the event (along with some bonus runner ups) – so – let’s begin!
Top 3: “Lessons”
1. Acute Care is positioned with powerful potentials to impact healthcare by force of millions and millions of dollars in the near future – we MUST demonstrate and openly MARKET our value!
- Expanding professional scope through specialty programs such as Emergency Department Physical Therapy practice, adjunct neuromusculoskeletal differential diagnosis to physicians, healthcare system initiatives (for example fall prevention and advanced patient mobility programs), and transdisciplinary leadership are just a few of the ways Acute Care PT’s can utilizing their passion, position, and skill sets to positively impact more than just the profession - such moves will expand to influence and improve healthcare at large!
- How do we do this?
- We, as a profession, MUST COLLABORATE with other allied healthcare professionals. Physical therapists tend to be too independently motivated; "I am an expert clinician" should mature to become "we are an expert health system"
- Our prime targets: the political power house of Registered Nurses, and, of course – the Physicians.
- A great resource for healthcare hashtags and nursing hashtags are in the links below:
- One hashtag ALL physical therapists should be jumping on is #fallschat.
- Physical therapists must NOT be afraid... we MUST rise to become healthcare leaders. All too often, rehab professionals tend to sequester themselves in a little box – perhaps uninterested, unwilling, afraid, or unknowing of how to mingle with the rest of the executive healthcare crowd. Maybe it’s because we speak a different language, maybe it’s as simple as the fact we are indeed a different cultural group of professionals. To be a leader, one must cross the aisle. I remember a great tweet during CSM which in essence said that: “a good leader is always on the edge of chaos.”
- Use standard measures, collect data, analyze, synthesize, and share the success!
- Too many Acute PT departments practice in such asynchronous rhythms; objective measures are not used in force but are simply haphazardly waved like a wand at the EHR
- We add value to our best political allies by doing the following:
- With nurses: develop mobility solutions, fall prevention, and safety measures
- With physicians: provide efficient, accurate, and beneficial discharge recommendations
2. Make satisfied patients loyal, life-long customers; maintain this connection through social media. The day of the newsletter is gone, the generation of Social Media is already here. Using Social Media as follow up and promotional tools is the future of maintaining strong connections with your patients and with the public at large.
- We should transition rehabilitation into wellness by offering free check ups.
- Utilize Facebook likes and shares with incentives, prizes, free or discount services.
- Capitalized on Twitter retweets and mentions in the same manner.
- Hold raffles entered by social media interactions.
- Market monthly check ups for 6 months, then, biannual checkups.
- Follow biannual check ups with annual checkups for minimal fees much like dentists, optometrists, and family physicians – WHY NOT!? We should! I'll be talking more on this - again - in a following post on business solutions.
Top 3 Favorite Moments
1. The #solvePT get together: was by far my most favorite moment throughout the entire conference. Why? For myself, and for many of us, this was the first time we were able to physically meet up with the Tweeps for which we have all gotten to know over the last year or so. What was most impressive was that the personality of each person carried it’s consistency through social media outlets as it did in person. If anything, this was a powerful testament to the range and depth that social media plays in our society today. It has applications to Physical Therapy practice, to business networking, and even to customer/patient satisfaction.
2. The exposition hall, especially with ALL THAT TECHNOLOGY! – I mentioned the need for Physical Therapy practice to seriously invest in the research and development of clinical technology in my Part 2 Disney, Mickey Mouse Moment Blog Post. I was ecstatic to see so many vendors and exhibitors with all sorts of technology for Physical Therapy practice. I even tried out cold laser treatments and frequency specific microcurrent. I snatched their articles (with permission) and look forward to making some time to audit the quality of research.
3. Seeing ALL the students, and, friends of new & old - and running into everyone, sporadically throughout the convention; some who I've met on Twitter, others with who I was reconnecting with friends from college and graduate school. If CSM is anything - it is absolutely social!
Alright then, that's it for now! Hang tight for more coming up including some highlight pictures! All in Part 2 of Top 3, Top 3’s from CSM 2013!