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  • 16-Feb-2024 2:44 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    How do you deal with inappropriate behavior by patients and their families? This article addresses how one person works with students and interns to demand a respectful work environment while modeling boundary setting for the trainees. 

    jamainternal_cowan_2018_pp_180013 (1).pdf

  • 16-Feb-2024 2:23 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The second installment in APTA's "Grow and Know Your Value" is here! Check out short videos of members sharing reflections: lessons learned, opportunities discovered, challenges overcome, and more.

  • 29-Sep-2023 12:39 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    From the FSBPT:

    First reported in last month's News Brief issue, the FSBPT Board wants to ensure you are aware of scams circulating that target licensees.

    According to received reports, the scammers send an email or fax a letter on state board letterhead alleging a licensing issue. The scammers then immediately call the target before they can call the PT board office directly to confirm. Furthermore, the scammers spoof the board office's phone number to trick the licensee into thinking the call is legitimate.

    We have received specific scam reports from the Alabama, Arizona, California, Georgia, and Maryland boards. Please always be vigilant and contact your state board before divulging any information.

  • 28-Sep-2023 11:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Elections for VP, Director, Delegates, PTA Rep, and Nominating Comm members are open. Members may vote here through October 6.

  • 01-Sep-2023 6:07 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    APTA has formally requested that all its chapters revise their bylaws as follows:

    • Guide alignment with APTA bylaws.
    • Address necessary compliance changes.
    • Provide clarity in approach across the federated model.
    • Contemporize the model bylaws framework and language.
    • Highlight best practices while allowing for flexibility in accordance with state law and component practices.

    In response to this directive, APTA Montana has diligently worked on amending its bylaws. These revisions necessitate a vote, which will take place during a meeting scheduled for October 7, Noon to 1:45pm. You may join us live at UMPT or  remotely via Zoom (link has been emailed to you and can be found in the events section of this site). Member attendance is crucial as we will engage in comprehensive discussions before the voting process.

    The proposed amendments are outlined in the provided document and encompass the subsequent modifications:

    • Simplification and modernization of language.
    • Update of membership categories (including PT, PTA, STU, and various DUES-related categories like lifetime and retired members).
    • Provision allowing the Board to establish dues, while Montana will maintain its dues within its bylaws.
    • Rearrangement of certain sections to a different article, without altering their content.
    • Inclusion of language mandating an ethics committee or liaison.
    • Replacement of language for the PTA Caucus Representative with APTA PTA Council representation. The term limit is increased from 2 terms to 3 consecutive terms.
    • Addition of language introducing a Representative to the APTA Student Council and removes the student seats from the Board.

    Your involvement is vital in shaping these amendments. Please make every effort to join us for the upcoming meeting to ensure your voice is heard during this significant decision-making process. Please see the document in the link for all changes, [note some sections were moved not newly created.]

    Bylaw Amendments can be reviewed here

  • 10-Mar-2023 12:27 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Legislative Update (Sam Schmidt):

    APTA-MT had a full first half of the legislative session. We had one of the largest attended Hill Days on February 10, 2023, with the Occupational Therapy and Speech Language Pathologist state associations.  Members who attended were able to have lunch and share our profession with lawmakers, sit in on the Senate and House hearings, and tour the capital.  It was also great to connect with so many providers from across the state in supporting our profession and its role in saving healthcare dollars. 

    Lobbyist Update (Nate McConnell):

    APTA-MT has made a splash in Helena!  Thanks to the extraordinary efforts from the Legislative Team, PTs are on the map.  It is hard to express how unique it is for a group to go from having no bill to push, no lobbyist to help push it, and no legislator to carry it all the way to getting a good bill, a good sponsor, and a great legislative push.  Despite the unfortunate vote on HB 736, we got PTs on the map and, more importantly, we have a presence in Helena.  Aside from getting APTA-MT’s voice heard, PTs are in line for an 8% increase in Medicaid reimbursement rates (4% per year over the biennium).  While it’s not enough – and we’ll keep pushing for better rates – it is a start.  We also have to celebrate the enormously successful HILL DAY on February 10th.  PTs had a big presence and made some great connections with legislators.  This sort of relationship-building is vital for future success!  Big thanks to Sam, Emily, Ben, and the rest of you who helped make Hill Day happen, who voiced support for the bill, and who continue to make APTA-MT part of the conversation.

    Thank you all who made the trip to Helena for Hill Day 2023!!


    Here are some key bills and their status as we move into the next half of the session. (Sam Schmidt)



    HB 736 Tabled: The Legislative Committee members and Payment Committee member, Ben Kingan worked with ATPA-MT’s Lobbyist Nate McConnell on getting a bill (HB 736) to address the inadequate reimbursement by Montana Medicaid for PT, OT, and Speech services.  Representative Tony Brockman of the Flathead (HD9) and Representative Alice Buckley of Bozeman (HD63) worked with the APTA-MT to sponsor and introduce HB 736 in the Human Services Committee on March 3, 2023.  There was a strong presentation of why this bill was so critical for access to cost saving therapy interventions and the trend of more and more small business providers no longer accepting Medicaid clients due to the inadequate payment to cover the provider. This bill tied PT, OT, and Speech services to a statute that Montana physicians use.  This is critical as therapy services follow the same rate methodology that physicians use based on RVUs (Relative Value Units) yet physicians have increased their conversion factor to cover their costs.  

    Small business clinics reported a range of $25-40 loss with every visit in providing services to a Medicaid participant.  This bill would close that gap almost fully. 

    While HB 736 was tabled for this session, the APTA-MT had great feedback and engagement around the value that PT brings to saving healthcare dollars.  Many lawmakers understand there is and will continue to be a growing issue of access for those using Medicaid if the gap is not addressed.  The APTA-MT will continue to meet on this issue and re-assess how to get this type of legislation across the line in 2025.  Thank you all who took time to send emails or reach out to those who represent you in Helena.  Your voice was heard and the APTA-MT will continue make sure to be heard.

    HB 649 Passed Committee: This is a bill for increasing provider rates for Medicaid with most of the focus medical providers who do not use the rate methodology physicians and allied professional services (this includes PT, OT, and Speech). This bill was largely based on the Guidehouse Study which was completed in 2022 and reported physicians were well above adequate rates but did not specifically address the allied rehabilitative providers (PT, OT, SLP).  If passed HB 649 would potentially offer PT an 8% increase over two years; this increase will not make the difference for closing the gap current reimbursement and actual cost to provide PT services.  Whereas HB 736 would have provided nearly 30% increase in reimbursement.  The APTA-MT is a proponent of HB 649 as it will help other healthcare workers provide services like medical transport, mental health, home aide assistance, and many more critical areas that support those who are on Medicaid to live their best lives.



    HB 496 Passed Committee: Obtaining preceptors for our medical, nurse practitioner, physician assistant, counseling, and other graduate-level health professional students is very difficult.   Private, for-profit, out-of-state institutions are sending their students to Montana in increasing numbers using the limited and precious resource of Montana preceptors with little chance that these students will relocate to Montana to serve our state's health care needs.

    Other states such as Georgia, North Carolina, Hawaii, Colorado, and Maryland have addressed this issue by instituting a tax incentive for preceptors who help educate those students in their own state without compensation.  HB496 is being put forward this session to change the landscape for Montana's preceptors and health professional programs.  The APTA-MT is a proponent of this bill and has requested Physical Therapists be added to the bill as an amendment.



    SB 380 Passed Committee: This bill is for an act entitled: “An act generally revising health care insurance laws; providing for exemption for prior authorization requirements”.  The APTA-MT is following this closely and is a proponent of this bill.  At the national level there are shifts to reduce administrative burden and prior authorizations, so it is refreshing to see it being address at the state level too.

    There are several other bills the APTA-MT is monitoring daily.  There are over 4500 bills this session, a historic record which has resulted in a fast and furious kind of experience for all.

    Please take time to write your local state representatives and senators a simple thank you note for their service as these folks are working around the clock to meet the budget and improve the lives of Montanans.

    If you are interested in looking up the status of a bill use the link:  https://leg.mt.gov/session/


  • 09-Mar-2023 1:54 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    APTA Montana is looking for a an APTA member to serve as a Key Contact for Congressman Matt Rosendale D2. He has district offices in Billings, Great Falls and Helena.

    Key Contacts are APTA members who serve as the primary contacts with their Senators or Representative in the United States Congress. There can be more than one Key Contact for a member of Congress. Key Contacts are vital in establishing valuable relationships with legislators to increase awareness of the issues that face the physical therapy profession. Key Contacts are encouraged to meet with their members throughout the year and provide feedback on the meetings to the APTA Government Affairs Department.

    Roles and responsibilities include establishing and maintaining a relationship with members of Congress and their staff, providing information on critical physical therapy issues to members of Congress, and developing a network of physical therapists that live in the state/congressional district who will write letters or make telephone calls to legislators in support of APTA's public policy priorities.

    If you are interested in serving in this role, email Ricardo Fernandez, APTA Montana's Federal Affairs Liaison at fernandez23@usa.net.

    Thank you to Brenda Mahlum, Missoula, who served APTA Montana for over 6 years as Federal Affairs Liaison, and to Ricardo Fernandez for volunteering to serve in this role. 

  • 09-Mar-2023 1:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We want to welcome Laurie Roberts, PTA, to the Board of Directors as Secretary. Laurie is currently serving as PTA Caucus Representative and would like to serve on the board while engaging PTAs to be active members. Thank you Laurie!

  • 01-Mar-2023 2:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The gathering for the APTA Montana’s winter conference, albeit cold in temperature, was warm and energizing while together. The knowledge, fun, and passion that was shared by all participants was inspiring to witness. As membership director, I find it invigorating to attend these conferences and enjoy meeting new members every time.

    During this meeting I looked at our mission, vision, values, and core focus. When I stepped back and thought about what this means to our members and future members, I discovered the importance of community and gathering. We have so many new PT’s moving into our communities as well as many native Montana’s that love to enjoy what the Big Sky has to offer.

    CALL TO ACTION.  I need community ambassadors from all over Montana to join me to lead local PT gatherings or what we are calling a PT Social throughout 2023. There are no parameters or forced time commitment. You could do a hike, journal club, book club, coffee social, and many more activities. If you already have a local, regular, meet ups please contact us by replying to this email. I am very excited to interact and brainstorm with all of you!

    Your Membership Director, Nicole Macaluso

    Inspiring collaboration, fostering success!

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