Urgent Action - Protect Your APA

APA Putting $$s Before Members' Choice

Senior APA members (including myself) are concerned that the issue of our APA enacting restrictive behaviour on members access to professional development is alarming and largely unrecognized. Whether by intent or timing, this significant issue has slipped under the radar for many APA members being pre-Christmas. However, those members we have spoken to are largely gobsmacked and appalled at this behaviour.

I was informed, that as a result of the APA member survey (which I also completed as a member), PD was voted hands down as one of the more important issues for members. The online webinars have been a positive new service for members. However, members didn't vote for the APA to take a position that stifles professional development through suddenly cutting access to all professional advertising or facilities. Often provided by those very same members, that through service and volunteer time, have created and built up many so-called 'APA PD courses'.

The APA is a great body for advocacy, policy formulation and other big-picture projects, but the heart of physiotherapy, the clinical expertise of physiotherapy, this lies outside the APA in its members. The APA is not a registered training organisation nor should it be in charge of member's access to professional development.

A Financial Decision

If you feel that this direction currently being undertaken is not positive for our APA - don't renew. We have been informed, those within the APA see this funneling of all members into APA sanctified courses as a financial decision. If 300 physiotherapists choose to express their dissatisfaction wishing for freedom of choice of PD, that is $300,000 less revenue. This is sending a clear message in the language they understand and letting those making this decision know we are not happy with their decision.

Time is of the essence - membership renewals are being considered now.

Other Actions You Can Take

The APA is OUR organization, so we need to ensure all members know they can make an informed decision about their membership renewal. So far the APA has only projected their opinion. No preparatory discussion was had with any other non APA professional education provider, no alternative opinion was invited to be presented in InMotion - our members' magazine. On the face of it, this seems blatant propaganda. We want this decision to be changed and PD freely and easily accessible to all members. As members we all have the ability to influence this outcome. Some actions you could consider to be further informed and involved include;

  1. Forwarding this email to your own networks; colleagues, work committees and peers
  2. Add your comments and Like our FB page
  3. Tweeters/hashtager, please mobilise your fingers to push out this information - it would be much appreciated
  4. Post comments on the APA Group LinkedIn page and APA FB page
  5. Contact the APA Board of Directors with your thoughts
  6. See what other physios are saying and add your comments on the current blog http://www.aapeducation.com.au/blog/entry/clinical-kit-98-24-11-2015-apa-restricting-your-pd-access.html

Insurance Options

One benefit of the APA membership was access to packaged insurance. A prime question about insurance is what are the alternatives? I was personally a member of AON for a long time before Insurance House was bundled with the APA and I took up that option, supporting the APA. I have since spoken with AON and they informed me they protect over 3500 physiotherapists and are happy to assist any wishing to change providers for 2016. I haven't spoken with Guild, but I am sure they would be able to also offer an alternative. Here is the table from AON. You can contact them directly for more information.

All the best,

Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist (awarded by Australian College of Physiotherapy, 2009)
PhD Candidate Curtin University
Clinical Director AAP Education