Arelease from the APTA states the NATA (athletic trainers association) has filed a lawsuit against them for "anticompetitive" activities. The main point relates to MANUAL THERAPY, specifically rib and spinal manipulation. Now, as the few of you that read my posts know, I'm a big believer you don't need 4 years of hot air and philosophy to manipulate the spine, but you do need to have an excellent background in systems review, examination skills, and a wide knowledge of differential diagnoses. Chiros have this and PT's have this, but I don't see this with ATC education. And I choose a "masters" level education, which is the "new and improved" ATC degree, to highlight this.
I make no claim that I could effectively manage the day to day sports injury needs of a sports team or walk the sidelines of a game and provide the triage care that an athletic trainer can. However, ATC's are beginning to push their limited rehabilitation education into the realm of PT, and I guess DC. This is just another example of people wanting more than they are willing to go to school and get the education for. Heck, internally we even exclude PTA's from MT courses because IT IS OUTSIDE OF THEIR educated abilities. Here is the statement from the APTA:
APTA Responds to NATA Lawsuit
The National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA) on February 1, 2008, filed a lawsuit against APTA and the Orthopaedic Section, APTA, Inc. in the U.S. District Court in Dallas. The complaint alleges that the APTA and the Section have violated the antitrust laws by seeking to deny athletic trainers (ATCs) access to the market for manual therapy and by coercing physical therapists to refrain from educating ATCs in certain techniques. APTA's counsel is currently reviewing the complaint. APTA believes that the NATA lawsuit is wholly without merit.
Physical Therapy can ONLY be provided by lisenced PHYSICAL THERAPISTS. Not by ATC's who wish themselves physical therapists.
- NATA's Letter to the APTA - laughable
- Addendum to the above letter
- APTA's letter to NATA
- NATA's Injunction Filing
The value of certified athletic trainers isn’t limited to theThen from a "FACT SHEET":
sports field. While ATCs have worked with orthopedists and in
rehabilitation clinics for the past 40 years, they can provide
a great deal of assistance – and additional revenue – to a
hospital, physician office or clinic, whether it be a large,
university-run complex or a small, private practice.
1. FACT: All athletic trainers have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited collegeSure, and I have a Doctorate degree similar to medical doctors then. What? It's not? Somebody better tell the NATA then.
or university. Athletic trainers are health care professionals similar to physical,
occupational, speech, language and other therapists.
To me, it seems the NATA may be trying to convince the lay public that they are in fact physical therapists with out having to go to physical therapy school. I hope you don't make the mistake of taking your grandfather s/p CVA or your mother with a diabetic ulcer, or your uncle who is trying to recover from a heart attack to a professional with out the educational background to effectively, and possibly, safely treat them.
It one thing to wave the magic wand (ultrasound) over someone and educate them in therapeutic exercise (which I believe ATC's surely do well) it's another thing to claim to be on par with THE experts in neuromusculoskeletal evaluation and rehabilitation.