Holly Johnson, PT, DPT

Holly Johnson, PT, DPT, is a PPS member and chief of clinical operations at PT Pros Physical Therapy and Sports Centers, which has several locations throughout southeastern Kentucky. She can be reached at hjohnson@ptpros.net.
Holly Johnson, PT, DPT

Name: PT Pros Physical Therapy and Sports Centers

Practice location: Barbourville, Columbia, Corbin, Harlan, Hazard, London, and Somerset, Kentucky.

Founded in 1980, PT Pros, Inc., currently owns and operates six outpatient clinics in southeastern Kentucky and also maintains contracts with skilled nursing facilities and hospitals in the area. At present, the company employs more than 60 full-time staff, including 15 doctoral-level physical therapists.

What is the most influential book/person/event that enhanced your professional career? Without a doubt, one of the most influential people in my professional career has been our company’s founder, Connie Hauser, PT, DPT, ATC. Her tenacity, passion, and independent spirit have not only impacted me, but also these qualities have been instrumental in the shaping of our company throughout the years. Working alongside someone who was mentored by such individuals as Jim Gould, Charles Magistro, Marilyn Moffat, Jayne Snyder, Chuck Martin, and Frank Mallon has been an immense blessing—as Connie’s knowledge and experience have been an invaluable influence on my own career.

Describe the flow of your average day. Do you treat patients and how many hours a day/week? When do you perform management tasks, answer emails, and market the business? With such a variety of practice sites, the flow of an average day can vary. Remaining flexible amidst all the hustle and bustle is key to keeping things running smoothly. The dynamic nature of our operation allows us to be more accommodating to the needs of both our patients and our communities—from appointment times to availability of particular services. Indeed, our willingness to remain adaptable to the needs of our clientele has made us the “PT for life” in many of the rural areas we serve.

Describe your essential business philosophy: To ensure the longevity of the company, our management team works together with a philosophy that emphasizes quality care and ultimate customer service. We stress the importance of doing the right thing—not just the most convenient thing— when juggling the needs of our patients, communities, employees, and profession. Above all, we remember to always practice with humility.

Best/worst/toughest decisions: Undoubtedly, our best decision as a company was the realization and implementation of private practice in a rural environment, as it has allowed us to witness how the growth of private practice has truly benefited areas where outpatient care was once nonexistent or minimal at best. We have been given the opportunity to accommodate patients who might not have otherwise been able to seek physical therapy.

How do you motivate your employees? My colleagues and I recognize and respect that our employees are independent thinkers and encourage them to bring new ideas for growth to the table. We empower them with the freedom to explore their professional strengths and interests in ways that turn ideas into actions, while using positive reinforcement to support and sustain their successes. Regardless of position, we encourage all members of the PT Pros “family” to take active ownership of their own potential—not only as employees, but also as individuals.

How did you get your start in private practice? PT Pros was founded in Barbourville, Kentucky, in 1980 by Connie Hauser, PT, DPT, ATC, and I joined the practice in 1986. Operating initially as Kentucky Physical Therapy, our company grew to include several additional sites and was eventually renamed PT Pros Physical Therapy and Sports Centers in 2002.

How do you stay ahead of the competition? Responding quickly and thoughtfully to market changes and surrounding ourselves with the best team of professionals—each with their own area of expertise—have been key to keeping our business moving forward. Staying on the educational edge and being alert to new ideas on the professional horizon have also played an important role in our success. Our recent work with funding efforts for the Foundation for Physical Therapy’s Center for Excellence will help carve a path for clinical research in the future. We also remain actively involved in the political arena working with the governmental affairs. In turn, many of these same individuals have now become some of the greatest champions for our profession within the communities we serve.

What are your best learning experience/s (mistakes) since inception of your practice? By far, my best learning experiences have been my ongoing involvement with APTA and PPS, as well as my work with our Kentucky state chapter. I currently serve as a member of the PPS Payment Policy Committee and as Chairman of the Kentucky Physical Therapy Association Payment Policy Committee. The relationships that I have formed have given me access to a wealth of information and the opportunity to network with a well-informed group of colleagues, which helps me and our company to build a solid foundation in these changing times. Another important learning experience for me has been participating in international mission work. Providing physical therapy services in Central America to a group who would otherwise not have access to such care has blessed me with a truly global perspective on the importance of what I do.

What is your life motto? My life motto can be summed up by our company’s mission statement, which simply states: “We are dedicated to improving the quality of every life we touch.”

What worries you about the future of private practice/what you are optimistic about? I certainly have concerns about the payment methodologies that will affect us in the next three to five years. However, in the face of this change, I believe our professional association will guide this process and make appropriate decisions to secure the future of physical therapy practices. On the other hand, I am very optimistic about the continued value of physical therapy in cost-effectively treating musculoskeletal concerns—particularly among the growing baby-boomer population. Consumers of all ages are becoming more educated in terms of their health. Thus, we as professionals are challenged to become more knowledgeable and efficient at what we do to meet and exceed their health care expectations. Indeed, perhaps now more than ever, we must earn the privilege of their choice.

What are new opportunities you plan to pursue in the next year? PT Pros continues to search for every viable opportunity to provide the best care possible to our patients and secure our future. This includes empowering our clinical staff to achieve various certifications and professional specialties and actively pursuing opportunities to partner with local industries in their preventative and wellness care. 

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