University of Missouri Graduates’ Comments Regarding the APTA & Mpta- Survey Results
Background and Purpose: Physical therapist graduates of the University of Missouri (MU) were surveyed regarding their views on the American and their state Physical Therapy Associations. The purpose of this presentation is to identify trends in the opinions on the value of membership in the national and state professional organization by graduates of MU. Case Description: MU Physical therapist graduates from 1965-2018 were surveyed by email with 119 respondents with open-ended questions to determine themes regarding participants’ views on the MPTA/APTA. Items included views on benefits/value of membership, purpose of the organizations and feedback regarding these associations. Respondents were asked why they discontinued membership if they had previously been members. Outcomes: (most common themes/responses) • Why discontinue/ not become a member? • Too costly • Employer won’t pay for it • No/not enough benefit to being member • Doesn’t have services/ resources I would use • What does MPTA do? • Advocates for profession • Provides CEUs • I don’t know • Discusses/ educates about field of PT • Reviews misconduct (incorrect) • Funds lobbyist • Monitors licensing (incorrect) • Tracks CEUs (incorrect) • Resources for PTs/ PTAs and students • Holds a conference • Uses dues for lobbying (incorrect) • Feedback on MPTA: • MO does more than other states to advocate for profession • Lacks volunteers to get involved • Represents us well in legislative issues • Focus on outpatient/ private practice • Not involved/ don’t know what MPTA does • Poor communication/ doesn’t take membership’s opinions into consideration • Board made up of educators, not clinicians (incorrect) • Glad part of PT compact • Meetings/ conferences always in same places • Benefits of APTA membership: • Journals and research access • CEU discounts • Represent profession nationally • Updates online about Medicare and reimbursement • Practice information • Sections • National conferences • Networking • What does APTA do? • Advocates for PT practice • Governs PT practice • Lobbies for profession • Not sure/ not much • Feedback regarding APTA: • Lower membership cost to increase membership numbers • Appreciate advocating for PT • Increase discounts for/free CEUs for members • Clearer communication: what APTA is doing for profession • Don’t like expectation that we become DPTs • Advocate more for insurance reform • Website easier to navigate Discussion: Results of this survey suggest that MU PT graduates have a moderate understanding of the benefits of membership in APTA/ state organization and role of these associations. They have suggestions to improve these organizations, primarily through increased participation and feel strongly that reduced cost of membership would facilitate this. Also believe better communication, discounts on CEUs and better access to information would enhance membership.