Future of the Academy 2023-2025 : Journal of Acute Care Physical Therapy

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Future of the Academy 2023-2025

Norris, Traci L. PT, DPT; President

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Journal of Acute Care Physical Therapy 14(1):p E1-E2, January 2023. | DOI: 10.1097/JAT.0000000000000211
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The transition from December to January each year is a time for revisiting the results of the previous year and setting goals for the year to come. What we know is that “more men fail through lack of purpose than through lack of talent.”1 When reflecting back on well-intentioned personal and professional endeavors, we often find situations when our outcomes could have been more comprehensive or successful if we had only honed our direction and focus. As the board of directors for APTA Acute Care considers our goals for the future, we want to be innovative, aligned with the mission and vision for the Academy, and focused to achieve our desired outcomes.


I am excited to report that we have finished work on the Academy of Acute Care 2023-2025 Strategic Plan (https://www.aptaacutecare.org/page/strategicplan).2 To develop this plan, numerous stakeholders within the Academy were consulted, including the board of directors, committee and taskforce chairs, and other content experts. Individuals were provided opportunities to review and provide input into this plan through focus group meetings and larger virtual strategic planning sessions. External consultants from Concepts Management and McKinley Advisors also provided guidance to establish a connection between our mission and an achievable strategic plan. This new plan sets the course for the next 3 years (2023-2025) and includes an updated mission, vision, and aspiration statement for the Academy.

Our strategic priority areas for the next 3 years are the following: sustainable profession, member value, and quality of care. In the area of sustainable profession, we will develop a compelling value proposition and support offerings for students and early career professionals to join the association and profession. For member value, we will deliver meaningful opportunities to belong, engage, and contribute. Finally for quality of care, we will elevate acute care practice to improve health outcomes for populations, communities, and individuals.

Objectives in this plan include a commitment to the pursuit of American Board of Physical Therapist Specialties (ABPTS) board certification, expanding collaborative research opportunities, growing the reach and impact of the Journal of Acute Care Physical Therapy, and creating educational resources for all members across the learning continuum. We are committed to deliver more meaningful opportunities for members to belong, engage, and contribute to the Academy. This includes focused efforts with diversity, equity, and inclusion within our Academy, fostering engagement with students and young professionals, as well as the creation of more educational resources for professional growth and knowledge translation for our members. We believe this plan will resonate with all our member groups: students, early professionals, educators, clinicians, residents, administrators, physical therapists, and physical therapist assistants.


No, we will continue the valued work of our individual committees and we will embark on targeted initiatives that align with this strategic framework. In the area of quality of care, the APTA Acute Care Practice Committee has created new practice-related resources. In 2023, the Practice Committee will release 2 laboratory values interpretation resource documents created in collaboration with APTA Pediatrics. The larger Laboratory Values Interpretation Resource Update 2022 document incorporates important updates to the introduction section and discusses laboratory values through the lifespan from birth to adulthood. A second point of care document will be a member-only benefit. The practice committee is also scheduled to release a pediatric vital sign resource later in 2023, a collaboration with the Academy of Pediatrics and the Academy Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Physical Therapy.

We are committed to providing essential education for members as a way to promote quality of care. The education committee will host additional journal clubs, webinars, and learning center courses in 2023. We will continue to investigate opportunities to share CSM content with members who were unable to attend virtual or in-person sessions. We are already planning future Bridging the Gap conferences. Our research committee continues to investigate novel ways to connect researchers with clinicians and will investigate an updated research agenda. Our clinical practice guideline groups continue their multiyear projects on topics that are important to members, and we will provide updates on this work. We continue to explore ways to share evidence and best practice through knowledge translation endeavors.

To support the areas of sustainable profession and member value, APTA Acute Care will enhance our communications with members. We will launch a new Academy podcast titled “Acute Conversations,” which will be an expanded platform to engage and share information with members. We plan for additional volunteer opportunities, more townhall forums, and will launch an updated Academy webpage in 2023! In the area of our focus groups and special interest groups, we remain committed to support their needs and creating additional opportunities for engagement and growth.

As the Academy starts work in 2023, please recognize that we need your help! We need you to volunteer your time and expertise to support new initiatives and we require your assistance to sustain the important work of our committees. We hope that the next strategic plan will inspire members to continue their involvement in the Academy and for some to answer a call to become more engaged. It is our hope that by January 1, 2026, APTA Acute Care will be recognized as an innovative, engaged, and diverse community that has elevated acute care practice and advanced early career physical therapists and physical therapist assistants. We hope that by that date, APTA Acute Care will be known as the leader and go-to resource for acute care practice. That is our aspiration and goal as we launch our new strategic plan to start in 2023.


Traci L. Norris, PT, DPT


1. Billy Sunday. www.brainyquote.com/quotes/billy_sunday_129120. Accessed November 2, 2022.
2. Academy of Acute Care Physical Therapy. APTA Acute Care Strategic Plan 2023-2025. https://www.aptaacutecare.org/page/strategicplan. Accessed November 10, 2022.
© 2023 Academy of Acute Care Physical Therapy, APTA