Physical Therapy Student Reflects on APTA Federal Advocacy Forum
By: Daniel Brown, UK Physical Therapy Class of 2013
I believe the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) is only as strong as the members who represent our profession, and I am proud to be one of many who came out to support the advancement of physical therapy at the recent Federal Advocacy Forum (FAF) held in Washington, DC April 22-24. I was one of 250 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants and students who learned how to effectively lobby members of Congress.
The Medicare Therapy Cap Repeal, the Student Loan Repayment under the National Health Service Corps, and the Traumatic Brain Injury Act of 2012 were the issues for which members of APTA, KPTA, and I lobbied in order to benefit our profession.
It was fascinating to see how much politics impacts our profession, and I will not stand still when I know I have the power to influence the advancement and quality of our profession. Over 60 students attended the FAF this year, and having the student voice representing the student loan repayment bill was crucial to delivering a strong message to our congressmen and congresswomen in Washington! It was in our nation’s capitol where I have developed a passion for aspects of the profession that I never knew existed when I first heard the words “physical therapist.” Being involved in the APTA has been a fantastic experience, but this experience gave me a whole new perspective on our profession.