Celebrating best practice

 

As a new graduate, I relished the opportunity to go over to the UK to work as a physiotherapist and gain some work experience. One of the most surprising comments made while I worked there was ‘We love Aussie physios, you are the best!’ At the time I didn’t pay much attention, and I returned home to start my own practice in aged care.

‘We are hoping to “transform” your practice with our upcoming conference in Adelaide next month. ’

After a few years, I realised I needed to update my knowledge so I attended the 2005 APA scientific conference in Melbourne. I was blown away by the research presented, and I spent the next few years with my conference abstract manual in my briefcase. I referred to it constantly as a reminder to utilise this new research and give my patients the best health outcomes. This conference was also my first touch point with the APA, and it ignited my passion for evidence-based physiotherapy. I got on board the emerging career pathway and completed my Gerontology Level 1, 2 and became titled in 2012.

In Australia, we have the tools at our fingertips to source recent developments in clinical practice via online platforms such as PEDro. Recently, my practice was asked to assist an organisation to make a proposal to the Aged Care Royal Commission on best practice falls prevention. We went straight to PEDro to see what evidence they had on this topic, and we were able to easily gather the facts to support our case.

Now that I am on the APA Board, and as a committee member of the Physiotherapy Research Fund, I have the responsibility to support emerging research in physiotherapy. Due to the generosity of members we now have the resources to commission research in areas that need more clarity on what constitutes best practice, and into areas that will support the APA’s advocacy efforts. We are also looking into developing new mediums to make sure that new research in the field is communicated effectively, in a modern way. We are all time poor and find it challenging to absorb the research but I urge all to continue updating your knowledge via APA courses, reading academic literature such as the Journal of Physiotherapy or jumping online to see what PEDro has to offer.

We are hoping to ‘transform’ your practice with our upcoming conference in Adelaide next month. I would like to thank the conference organising committees, led by Joanne Connaughton and the fantastic conference team at the APA. The conference will be a great opportunity to see how we all can play a role in the APA’s evolving strategy, spend time with our friends and update our knowledge. I encourage you to attend so that we can all celebrate the achievements of our academics. It is their research that helps make us, Aussie physiotherapists, some of the best in the world.

 

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