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July 16, 2019

The American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS), the governing body for certification and recertification for clinical specialists in physical therapy, is accepting nominations from board-certified clinical specialist in geriatric physical therapy to fill 1 position on the Geriatric Specialty Council. Appointments are for 4-year terms beginning January 1, 2020. The deadline to submit your application is on July 31, 2019. Interested individuals may apply at the APTA Engage website:


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July 08, 2019

CMS, in conjunction with APTA, AOTA, and ASHA, will be hosting two upcoming LIVE webinars w/ Q&A regarding PDGM and PDPM:

Demonstrate Value of Therapy Services Before Home Health Payment Changes Begin

Date: Monday, August 5, 2019

Time: 2:00 p.m. EST

Register here:

Therapy Services After Payment Changes in SNFs: How to Show Your Value Within PDPM

Date: Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Time: 2:00 p.m. EST

Register here:

While the live webinar and Q&A is available only to APTA, AOTA, and ASHA members, a recording will be made available to both members and non-members.


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July 08, 2019

Change is now an essential element of doing business in our current healthcare environment. When keeping pace with constantly changing consumer needs/demands and various third-party payer and regulatory requirements, managing change well is extremely important. Expanding your knowledge in change management will not only help you survive but thrive with the upcoming integration of Post-Acute Payment Models in the skilled nursing and home health settings and maintain a constant state of readiness for future healthcare changes. The AGPT, HPA and HH sections have collaborated to bring you this fantastic webinar on August 1, 2019 that will address the challenges of change and how to apply change management strategies for success.

To register visit the AGPT PDPM/PDGM Resources page at . Under Important Links, you will see the link to Change Management Webinar on August 1, 2019. Click on it and it will take you to the HPA webpage where you can sign up. If you are a member of the HPA, the webinar will be free after logging in. If you are not, then use the code: healthcare2019 at checkout and you will get it free!

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July 02, 2019

NEW TRAINING EVENT — Updated Section GG Web-based Training Course

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is offering a web-based training course on how to properly code of Section GG. This 45-minute course is intended for providers in the following care settings: Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs), Long-Term Care Hospitals (LTCHs), Inpatient Rehabilitation Facilities (IRFs), and Home Health Agencies (HHAs); and is designed to be used on demand anywhere you can access a browser. The course is divided into the following four lessons and includes interactive exercises that allow you to test your knowledge in real life scenarios:

• Lesson 1: Importance of Section GG for Post-Acute Care

• Lesson 2: Section GG Assessment and Coding Principles

• Lesson 3: Coding GG0130. Self-Care Items

• Lesson 4: Coding GG0170. Mobility Items

Click here to access the training.

If you have technical questions or feedback regarding the training, please email the PAC Training mailbox. Content-related questions should be submitted to the Quality Reporting Program Help Desk for your care setting.


Video Tutorials Available to Assist with Coding Specific Section GG Items

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is releasing a series of short videos to assist providers with coding select Section GG items on the OASIS, IRF-PAI, LTCH CARE Data Set, and the MDS. These videos, ranging from 4-12 minutes, are designed to provided targeted guidance using simulated patient scenarios. To access the videos, click on the links below:

Coding GG0110. Prior Device Use with Information From Multiple Sources (3:58)

Decision Tree for Coding Section GG0130. Self-Care and GG0170. Mobility (11:56)

Coding GG0130B. Oral Hygiene (4:25)

Coding GG0170C. Lying to Sitting on side of bed (4:33)

For more information, please see:

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June 26, 2019

Thank you to the members of AGPT’s Evidence-Based Documents (EBD) Committee and the EBD Editorial Board, the Balance and Falls Special Interest Group, the AGPT/NCOA Partnership Task Force, and the Payment and Legislative Committee for their assistance in responding to the US Senate Special Committee on Aging request for information on falls and fall prevention as they prepare to release an annual report on this topic in the coming months.


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June 25, 2019

We are pleased to share the following new student publication developed by the Balance and Falls SIG with all of our members!



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June 19, 2019

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is looking for new ideas for ways to reduce unnecessary administrative burden on clinicians, providers, patients, and their families. the agency’s request for information (RFI) particularly seeks feedback on how it can: (1) improve accessibility and presentation of CMS requirements for quality reporting, coverage, documentation, or prior authorization; (2) address specific policies or requirements that are overly burdensome, are not achievable, or cause unintended consequences in a rural setting; (3) clarify or simplify regulations or operations that pose challenges for beneficiaries dually enrolled in Medicare and Medicaid, and those who care for them; and (4) simplify beneficiary enrollment and eligibility determination across programs.

APTA/AGPT is drafting comments, and is soliciting feedback from members to help inform the development of our comments.

Deadline for Comments: Monday, August 12, 2019
Review RFI
To submit comments: Take action

**Information about this RFI and how to submit comments is posted to the Regulatory Take Action webpage.

AGPT strongly encourages individuals to submit comments!

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June 01, 2019

Below are links to 5 handouts that the National Senior Games Association and the AGPT Task Force ecreated for Senior Athletes competing in Albuquerque, New Mexico at the National Senior Games this month. The AGPT/NSGA Partnership Task Force led by Task Force Chair Dr. Becca Jordre PT, DPT, Board Certified Geriatric Clinical Specialist and Certified Exercise Expert for Aging Adults began their work in January 2019 shortly after CSM in Washington, DC. Objectives of this task force include creating co-branded educational materials for older adult athletes and the surrounding community of physical therapists who work with these athletes. The Games will take place from June 14-25, 2019 and there are currently many PTs and PT students from NM and the NM Chapter volunteering by giving the Senior Athlete Fitness Exam (SAFE) screening and athlete education. 


Bone Health




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May 30, 2019

Home Study Modules Now Available on the APTA Learning Center

Physical Therapy and the Aging Adult: Limb Loss in Older Adults (Just Released!) Details at

Management of Falls and Fall Prevention in Older Adults

Tool Kit for the Prevention of Diabetic Foot Ulcers

Assistive Devices, Adaptive Equipment, Orthotics, and Wheeled Mobility for the Older Adult

Bariatric Obesity in the Older Adult

End of Life Ethics

Breast Cancer Related Lymphedema

Biopsychosocial and Environmental Aspects of Aging

Full details can be found at

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May 02, 2019


CDC released two new complimentary clinical tools to help healthcare providers reduce older adult falls. The Coordinated Care Plan to Prevent Older Adult Falls offers primary care providers, practices, and healthcare systems a framework for implementing a Stopping Elderly Accidents, Deaths, and Injuries, or STEADI-based clinical fall prevention program in primary care settings to manage older patients’ fall risk. Complementing the Coordinated Care Plan, the STEADI: Evaluation Guide for Older Adult Clinical Fall Prevention Programs describes key steps to measuring and reporting on the success of implementing a STEADI-based clinical fall prevention program. CDC recommends using both the Coordinated Care Plan and the Evaluation Guide simultaneously to ensure the team is able to collect the data needed to report on the clinical fall prevention program’s overall success.


Older adult falls are the leading cause of all fatal and nonfatal injuries among adults age 65 and over in the United States, accounting for over 3 million emergency department visits, 962,000 hospitalizations, and approximately 30,000 deaths in 2016. Additionally, the economic impact of falls and fall deaths is nearly $50 billion in direct medical costs each year.

Although falls are costly, they are preventable. CDC’s STEADI initiative offers a coordinated approach to implementing the American and British Geriatrics Societies’ clinical practice guideline for fall prevention. STEADI consists of three core elements: Screen, Assess, and Intervene to reduce fall risk by offering tailored interventions to reduce fall risk.


For successful implementation of fall prevention activities in primary care settings, the Coordinated Care Plan outlines 12 steps incorporating practical suggestions. These recommendations include how to assess the clinic’s readiness to address older adult falls, identify a fall prevention champion, train staff, and work within the existing clinic workflow to incorporate the fall prevention program, thereby reducing falls among community-dwelling older adults.


As May begins Older Americans Month, see what you can do to help prevent falls. More than 90% of older adults see a medical provider at least once a year, giving clinicians the opportunity to inform and empower older adults to address one or more specific fall risk factors. Reducing falls improves health, fosters independence, and reduces healthcare spending. Help keep your older adult patients safe, independent, and STEADI.


To learn more visit


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March 18, 2019

The New Skilled Nursing Facility and Home Health Payment Models

What You Need to Know

Medicare payment system is in the midst of a paradigm shift—away from the fee-for-service payment structure, in which providers are rewarded solely by the volume of services provided, and toward a structure that holds providers accountable for patient outcomes and costs. This move to value-based care is intended to advance the goals of health care's "triple aim"—improving the patient experience of care (including quality and satisfaction), bettering the health of populations, and reducing the per-capita cost of health care.

As part of this effort, CMS has finalized significant changes that will affect the home health and skilled nursing facility payment systems—beginning in FY 2020 for SNFs and CY 2020 for home health agencies. These payment systems align payment with patient characteristics and patient needs, and eliminate the connection between therapy utilization and reimbursement. CMS finalized the Skilled Nursing Facility Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM) and Home Health Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) in 2018.


Links to two PDPM Q&A sessions are below:

Tuesday, March 12:

Thursday, March 14:

Recorded Webinars: Home Health Patient-Driven Groupings Model - 3/6/19

APTA staff and members of the Home Health Section Government Affairs committee recorded an overview of the Patient-Driven Groupings Model and recorded 2 live Q&A sessions.

Challenging the Myths Associated With PDPM and PDGM - 11/15/18
Unfortunately, there are a number of myths about these 2 new payment systems, shaping biases and working against the long-term success of these models. 
APTA Recorded Webinar via Adobe Connect

How Changing Post-Acute Payments Impact the Role of PT- 10/11/18
Recorded Webinar (October 2018) Free to APTA Members via APTA Learning Center

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February 19, 2019

A New SNF PDPM Webinar Recording is Now Available

An Overview of the Skilled Nursing Facility Patient-Driven Payment Model webinar is now available at

The webinar was put together by the Post-Acute Care Educational Collaborative and was done by AGPT and HPA members along with APTA staff. The webinar recording is open to all members and non-members.


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February 14, 2019

Home Health PDGM MLN Matters Article

A new MLN Matters Article MM11081 on Home Health Patient-Driven Groupings Model (PDGM) – Spilt Implementation is available. Learn about the payment reform requirements.

Implementation of the SNF PDPM MLN Matters Article

A new MLN Matters Article MM11152 on Implementation of the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Patient Driven Payment Model (PDPM) is available. Learn about the required changes.

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February 11, 2019

On February 5, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) posted on their MDS 3.0 Technical Information Webpage a new draft version (V3.00.0) of the MDS 3.0 Data Specifications. This version is scheduled to become effective October 1, 2019. These specifications are used for software developers and vendors to update SNF PPS grouper, MDS, electronic health record, and billing systems to align with annual updates to the MDS-RAI (yet to be issued) and SNF PPS billing requirements. Note that there are many significant changes, to align with the transition to the new Skilled Nursing Facility Prospective Payment System (SNF PPS) from the Resource Utilization Groups, Version 4 (RUG-IV) to the Patient Driven Payment Model (PDPM). These changes include the removal of eight RUG-IV assessment item sets (NS, NSD, NO, NOD, SS, SSD, SO, SOD), the addition of two new PDPM assessment item sets (IPA – Interim Payment Assessment and OSA – Optional State Assessment), and item additions in Sections A, GG, I, J, O and Z. See this link for the draft MDS 3.0 Item Sets v1.17 for October 1, 2019) that were issued on January 3. The MDS draft data specifications also accommodate the utilization of the PDPM grouper (not issued yet) , which also begins on October 1, 2019. In addition, a new version (V1.04.0) of the MDS 3.0 CAT Specifications was posted. This version is also scheduled to become effective October 1, 2019. The specification for CAT 12 (Nutritional Status) has been updated in accordance with the changes in V3.00.0 of the MDS 3.0 Data Specifications.


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January 07, 2019

MyMobilityPlan_300x174.pngWith aging might come changes in older adults’ ability to get around and do the things they want and need to do. These mobility changes may affect older adults’ health and independence and are related to an increased risk of falls and motor vehicle crashes—the two leading causes of older adult injury.

The CDC released a new mobility planning tool to help older adults create a personalized MyMobility Plan. This planning tool, along with a supporting fact sheet about medicines that might increase risk of a fall or motor vehicle crash, helps older adults plan for mobility changes similar to the way that many plan financially for retirement.


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November 12, 2018


Please listen to this audio file form the AGPT Director of Publications and Partnerships Jackie Osborne, PT, DPT 


Click Here to Listen

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