The direct access bill just passed the Kansas House. It is on it's way to the Senate.

Direct Access

The APTA has a document that summarizes the direct access laws by state. Very useful if you're considering moving! (This version has not yet been updated to include KS's most current law.). Listed are a link to the page with several links to more information for direct access at the state level as well as the link for the direct access laws by state.

Ethics and Professionalism

Here is a link to the APTA section on ethics. Links include how to resolve conflicts or complaints, ethics decision-making tools, and how to find an attorney.

Ethics Reporting The "Ethics Reporting" link brings you to a document found on the above APTA website that describes the ethical and legal obligation of physical therapists in reporting misconduct. This would be a good resource to help maneuver through an ethical dilemma.

Here is a link to the Code of Ethics in Physical Therapy from the APTA. It contains the preamble and eight principles for a physical therapist to practice by.

The PTCAS website details the professionalism demanded of those entering the PT profession by detailing its seven core values.

This is a link from the APTA's website containing a list of legal topics that could be of interest to physical therapists and physical therapist assistants. It addresses topics such as malpractice, treating patients who are impaired, informed consent and several others. It has information about each topics as well as links to other sites containing more detailed information.

Ethical Decision Making

The FSBPT (Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy) has many great resources for physical therapists and their website includes a page dedicated to ethical decision making in the health care profession, including types of moral behavior, an outline of the RIPS model, and different tests that can be applied to individually determine if something is ethical.

Professional Liability Insurance
Here are some links about the importance of liability insurance and one to a company recommended by the APTA that is one of the main companies that provide liability insurance for health care providers. Most companies provide liability insurance but also check to make sure you are covered if you do any work outside of that company.

Heath Information Privacy
Though we are familiar with HIPPA policy, this link to the Health and Human Services Department gives a quick summary and full guide as to who is considered a covered entity as well as policy guidelines for protection of health information.

Conflicts of Interest
This is a very in depth article about the conflicts of interest (including systemic and financial) and how they relate to the clinical setting. It provides detailed descriptions as well as examples for different types of conflicts of interest that might be faced in the clinical setting.

Kansas Physical Therapy Practice Act
As physical therapists, we must all be aware of the practice act for the state we plan on practicing in. Each state has slightly different licensure laws, requirements for licensure maintenance and renewal. For example, in Kansas a PT must have professional liability insurance and continuing education is a requirement for renewal. I have provided a link to the Kansas PT Practice Act, as provided by the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts, since the majority of us will begin our careers here following graduation.

Resolving Disputes or Complaints
The ATPA offers a plethora of resources for physical therapists. This webpage outlines how to effectively resolve disputes and complaints. It provides all the necessary steps to help problem solve through legal dispute or ethical dilemma.

Medicare Fraud and Abuse
This resource is great as a quick first reference for anyone that finds themselves in a situation involving medicare/medicaid fraud or abuse. It supplies a quick overview of many aspects related to fraud and abuse and provides further resources for the different sub-topics.
This resource can be used along with the above resources. It provides a protocol for what to do if you find yourself in a situation regarding accidental fraud. It is a quick reference that can be used as a checklist for an individual completing a voluntary disclosure.

Securing Legal Counsel
This resource provides information about how and when to find legal counseling services, in the unfortunate situation that they may be necessary. It details things such as lawyers willing to work Pro Bono, and also provides useful things to look for in legal counsel. It also provides a starting point by providing questions you should ask your potential lawyer, including what kind of experience they have with audit cases and Medicare cases.

PT License
This is a great resource mainly for Travel PTs, but also for non-travel physical therapists as well. This is a list, by state, of the time frames required to obtain a license from that particular state. For travel PT's, who need a license from each state they are going to practice in, this is particularly important so they know how long in advance they need to start working on getting that license.