Pitt PT Named as a #1 Physical Therapy Program

It is with excitement that we announce the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Pittsburgh is ranked #1 in the nation according to the newly released 2016 rankings of U.S. News & World Report’s Best Graduate Programs in Physical Therapy. Pitt shares the 1st place recognition with 3 other institutions – University of Delaware, University of Southern California, and Washington University in St. Louis. For the past 10 years the Pitt PT program has been ranked among the top 3 PT programs in the country.  Since its founding in the 1930’s, the Physical Therapy education program at Pitt has continued to be a leader in education, research, leadership and innovation. The DPT program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE), and recently received ‘re-accreditation with commendation’ through 2025.

 We are grateful to be learning from our incredible faculty and staff members, who continue to uphold and build upon Pitt PT’s reputation as a physical therapy program, and to those alumni who carry that reputation out into their practices. Hail to Pitt!

 Click here to see the full PT Program rankings from U.S. News & World Report.



Class of 2018 DPT Students celebrating our #1 ranking!

March 17, 2016 |

Advocacy Update: Flash Action Strategy

Flash Action Strategy

The goal of the FAS campaign is to get students involved in advocacy and spread awareness of the role physical therapists play in youth sports concussion management.

 Currently, about 1,000 individuals have taken action and sent a little over 3,000 emails to Congress.  This is a good start, but that’s less than 3% of students who have taken action and we need more people to get involved.  If you are a professor or educator, please take 60 seconds and ask your students to email their legislators using the Legislative Action Center or the Patient Action Center today.  If you are a student, ask your professor if you can make a brief announcement about FAS and encourage your fellow students to take action right away. 

 We need your help to make this year’s FAS campaign a success.  Please help spread awareness and encourage your colleagues, friends, students, etc. to get involved!

September 14, 2014 |

Advocacy Update: 2/12/2014

Advocacy: Stop the Medicare Therapy Cap

How would you feel if your ability as a physical therapist to produce the best possible outcome for a patient was hindered by his or her limited Medicare coverage?  Would you feel satisfied discharging a patient because he or she has exhausted the annual Medicare coverage for physical therapy services and cannot afford to pay out-of-pocket, knowing that he or she has the potential to recover and progress further with your services?  Without a repeal of the Medicare therapy cap, Medicare beneficiaries and their physical therapists will be faced with these dilemmas.

As part of the Balanced Budget Act passed in 1997, the SGR (Sustainable Growth Rate) formula and Medicare therapy cap were created, placing Medicare beneficiaries on an annual financial limit for physical therapy and speech-language pathology services combined, with a separate limit for occupational services, for outpatient settings.  Currently, a $1920 annual cap is placed on Medicare beneficiaries to be split between physical therapy and speech therapy services with an automatic exceptions process that can provide for additional coverage beyond the $1920 limit if the need for continued skilled services is documented.  A medical review is required once costs have reached $3700 to have coverage continue.  The cap on services is a strict annual financial limit on services and is not renewed for a new diagnosis.

On January 1, 2014, this exceptions process was extended until March 31, 2014 under the SGR Reform Act of 2013, giving time to Congress to develop a permanent solution to the therapy cap.  This past week new legislation was introduced to Congress, but the proposed SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act (H.R. 4015) does not address extensions to or a permanent repeal of the Medicare therapy cap, which could mean a firm cap without the possibility of an extension.  We have to advocate for our patients during this critical time by lobbying for inclusion of a repeal of the therapy cap on outpatient rehabilitation services in the final legislation passed.

Sign into the Legislative Action Center if an APTA member at http://www.apta.org/TakeAction/ or through the new PTaction app to email members of Congress today to express the need for a full repeal of the therapy cap and to ask for their support of the Medicare Access to Rehabilitation Services Act that would repeal the cap if passed.  If a non-APTA member, access the Patient Action Center to take action.

Information about the Medicare therapy cap gathered from apta.org.

~Natalie Novak

February 12, 2014 |

CSM Thursday Memo: 2/6/2014

The Thursday Memo – CSM Edition

February 6, 2014                                                                                       PITT DPT STUDENTS

Pitt PT CSM Day 4!

To borrow a cliché, I would say that the phrase “like a kid in a candy store” applies very accurately to my first experience at CSM.

As a CSM first-timer, I have been mystified, intrigued and encouraged by every lecture, poster-session, and exhibit hall presenter that I have come across.  Each day holds almost endless opportunities to learn a new treatment technique, see a brand new modality, and add knowledge on a new topic.

Never, however, have I felt like I have so much yet to learn.  Each lecture that I have attended has been presented by content experts in their respective fields, some of which who have literally written the book on their area of expertise.  The insightful and inventive questions that arise from the audience members are just as novel and fascinating; each experienced clinician often has a different spin on the presenter’s information, and have brought fascinating new perspectives to the lectures.

Each of these experiences does not come without an intense sense of motivation and inspiration on my part.  Seeing content experts and veteran clinicians alike acts like a fuel to continue learning, listening and appreciating.

One overarching theme that I have noticed from speakers is how much they each have to learn.  “The research is lacking,” they will commonly say, “there is much more for us to do” before the area of discussion is fully understood.  This statement, heard in almost every session I have seen, cements the concept of life-long learning as a physical therapist.  No matter how extensive your career, how many years you have logged in the clinic or how much research you have studied, there is still more to understand and to better your clinical skill.  I can gather that even at CSM 2044, that wide-eyed wonder to learn and better my knowledge base will still be present; luckily, I could start at CSM 2014.

~Jeremy Harris


Check the Calendar for Class Schedules and Events

Social Media Updates
  • #DPTstudent –  WEDNESDAYS , 9-10pm EST!   Check out #DPTstudent page for details!
  • Unite Physical Therapy Students – If you haven’t yet, please check out the “Doctor of Physical Therapy Students” Facebook page. More than 9,500 students have already joined!
  • Our own page! Pitt Physical Therapy, thanks to the Social Media Team, has create an official PittPT Facebook page!
  • #SolvePT (meets on Tuesdays Twitter from 9-10pm EST)
February 6, 2014 |

CSM Wednesday Memo: 2/5/2014

The Wednesday Memo – CSM Edition

February 5, 2014                                                                                       PITT DPT STUDENTS

Pitt PT CSM Day 3!

Tuesday, day one of #CSM2014. Mosley, Butler, Irrgang, Childs, Fritz, and all the usual suspects. It started as a typical conference but the crowds who witnessed these presentations were blown away. Butler and Mosley helped us all understand that pain, though a personal journey, could be guided by a physical therapist. Dr. Irrgang created a decision making profile that will help us return our throwing athletes to competition with less risk of re-injury. But the final presentation of the day was by 2 Pitt grads and an economist out of Georgetown. All three showed that therapists, especially the good ones, provide excellent care, but the daily assault from chiropractors, exercise “therapists” and other so called providers of physical therapy services is a sometimes daunting task to respond to.

This task, though difficult, is made easier by the research of Dr.’s Childs and Fritz which clearly shows the value of physical therapy. The continued proliferation of POPTS is only confirmation of the poor value contained in the current model. Despite the fact that we utilize less resources and have better outcomes than opioids, injections and surgery we continue to be a second tier provider. Childs and Fritz, in not so many words advocate the need for physical therapists to fill the void and lead the charge for value based intervention.

The challenge is not providing the care but creating the opportunity for that care to be delivered. The current “value” window is open but quickly closing. As a profession we all see the need for evidence based care. It’s time now to take advantage of the opportunity in front of us and come together as a whole to meet the need of the greater population and show our value and worth. Today we were shown a new model for success. It’s time we embrace this model and drive the profession forward instead of reacting to changes imposed upon us.



Check the Calendar for Class Schedules and Events

Social Media Updates
  • #DPTstudent –  WEDNESDAYS , 9-10pm EST!   Check out #DPTstudent page for details!
  • Unite Physical Therapy Students – If you haven’t yet, please check out the “Doctor of Physical Therapy Students” Facebook page. More than 9,500 students have already joined!
  • Our own page! Pitt Physical Therapy, thanks to the Social Media Team, has create an official PittPT Facebook page!
  • #SolvePT (meets on Tuesdays Twitter from 9-10pm EST)
February 5, 2014 |