One big (mostly) happy family — #PPS2015

I’m getting better at traveling. Although not particularly fond of being away and I’m not sure I’ll ever trade my trusty REI backpack for one of those snazzy 4 caster rollers I see everywhere, I haven’t had to sprint through the airport recently and even the trams in Atlanta have started to make sense to me, so I think I’m improving. 

Since I had a few minutes I decided to get my daily news about stories I care about from people who I choose to hear from….which means I went right to twitter…and THIS tweet is what I saw from one of my favorite PTs @mike_horsfield.

Tweet

Ha! I love it…..I mean being a crazy uncle isn’t that bad (I’m sure my nieces and nephews would agree on some level that the title works), but most importantly b/c I love the “Family Reunion” reference….because that’s EXACTLY right….and because that’s what’s going to help us do our part to clean up the mess that is the health of the US.


 

So you’re saying there’s a chance?

I got to the beautiful conference just in time to see some familiar faces, meet a few others in person and hear an old friend do what he does….make people think.  So cool for me to stand in the back and smile a bit as the wheels in the packed room started to turn.  Somewhere in there I found myself in a great conversation with a high-energy guy I’ve gotten to know over the years….we were talking about some various strategies to help people get toward better health and said something that hit me hard….he used the word “Patriotic” in a conversation about improving health in the areas he serves.

THERE.  Right there…..I knew it was going to be a great conference.  If nothing else happened, if every lecture sucked (not the case), I was energized.  I wrapped up fairly early for the night after hanging out with some great folks including a couple guys on the “PTs to watch” list (@Eric_in_AmERICa@Trent_Salo and @Babcock_DPT [who’s great pic/tweet captured the other awesome folks at the table]) but I hardly slept…my wheels were blazing (which usually comes with a warning label).

The next AM I woke up thinking about it….in a sea of people who don’t, at least one other person in my profession was “getting it”.  So refreshing, thanks @mikerjrpts Now, to be fair, I know there are others….but only few who look at it that way…..that health is a legitimate threat to the US; that health of the American people is dragging us down in ways far beyond the mess healthcare (looking inward) seems to have made of things. Very few are talking about it that way…..and even fewer are really ready to DO something about it…but there’s at least one…..and maybe it’s changing.


  The game has changed (past tense) I walked into the grand ballroom ready to hear another one of my favorite authors speak. Ironically, one of his books (DRIVE) started a conversation with one of the PTs who ultimately pulled me into the fold with this group +/- 5 years ago….I was pumped to listen and got a ton out of it (kudos @ppa_apta for another great show) — one of the key messages, the game has changed….now adapt. We listened to the future leaders explain why they felt they were ready to lead that change…..we listened to some of the reports on what the section has been doing so far and I thumbed through the 2015 annual report.  On the first page a vision which included the words “Leaders”, “Innovators in the healthcare system”, “Empowered”, “Achieve”, “Excellence”, “Success”…..LOVE IT…..we are positioning to make a real dent in the problem…..now we need to do it. The day went on and I was able to cross paths with a few more members of “the family”. The matriarch and patriarch….the wise elders…..and even a few of the “rowdy kids” (I’ll let you decide who those are).  I stopped in to hear and see some of the data that shows early physical therapy massively impacts a person’s health experience AND saves major dollars in the process (only reinforcing the case for @GetPT1st ….a group that managed to convince like 25K people that something I said was cool on social media….clearly they are magicians).  

I continue to be floored by the opportunity that exists (great job @heidiojha!) to make meaningful change, it is staring us in the face.

I wrapped up the day presenting (spewing some passion might be more accurate) with an energized group alongside my fellow misfit THE @Jerry_DurhamPT . The 60 min session carried over into the bar and went WAY past my bedtime but the energy from the entrepreneurial branch of the PT family tree was palpable. The buzz and conversations were meaningful and, well, the nachos were pitifully late…..but I digress.  I got to meet some more great people who are attacking the problem in creative ways…..I got to talk about politics with the venerable @EricaMeloe a bit about the gender gap with one of the key voices (literally) in PT @KarenLitzyNYC, a “catch-up with the editor” @StacyMenz – who is doing some awesome things in pediatric PT and, thanks to connector and pelvic floor star (seems like a dangerous combo) @SandyHiltonPT it included a confirmation that @pedalPT is a real person and someone who is doing some really cool stuff.

I collapsed into bed and realized…..We’re getting there…..


 

Thank you to “the PT family” – your energy is amazing…..Better health for every American in this lifetime….it can be done.

Mike E.