What the Future Holds

By Terry C. Brown, PT, DPT

When I was growing up, 2015 was the future, not like a few years into the future, but like the Jetson’s future. (Those of you too young to have experienced The Jetsons, Google it). Flying cars, food in pellets, and robot servants were predicted. Well, the future has arrived and I don’t know about you, but I’m still driving on the road, eating real food, and serving myself. Some predictions for the future are just that—predications.

Predictions about the future of physical therapy are strewn with tales of ACOs, medical homes, pay for performance, and other models that threaten private practice. While these models do exist, do they truly threaten our existence? Have they hurt your bottom line? My point here is that the big-ticket predictions being touted as the future are not necessarily the issues that affect our members’ bottom line. Those issues continue to be declining payment, referral for profit, and regulatory burden.

These bottom line issues affect every member and limit the potential we have to offer. The good news is that these issues are top on our radar and we are working together with all vested partners to address them. Headway is being made and PPS will put new and innovative ideas in the pipeline in the coming year.

The truly great news is that PPS members continue to provide patients and payers with a cost effective, results-oriented product. This product of quality, compassion, and service is unique to our industry, thereby creating services that the pubic will demand. We are currently raising a generation of clients who rely on their personal physical therapist for health services as we see patients across their life span. This will grow as we focus on consumer awareness, quality initiatives, and business models that focus on health and prevention. No predictive model can replace the drive, compassion, and patient-centered focus that our practices provide.

It is incumbent upon each of us to do our part to provide unique, quality business models that will drive private practice in the market place. PPS’s will provide access to and continue to develop the tools to help this happen.

As the board of directors meets to develop the strategic plan for our section, be assured that we will look at the future and address the many “predictions” that are on the horizon. Be also assured that the plan will be grounded in the issues that affect our bottom line and our future success.

I wish each of you a very happy and prosperous new year!


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