REVITALIZE 2019 – Looks like we made it!

The celebration of direct access in Illinois continues — as physical therapy professionals, early careers and students from across Illinois and the surrounding states came together on April 6th for our one day REVITALIZE Conference at the Q Center in St. Charles.

For those who missed out all on the excitement that took place this year – lets take a look at some of the conference highlights


REVITALIZE kicked off with a number of IPTA leaders, IPT-PAC donors and supports of the IPTF gathering on Friday evening a the Riverside Receptions for an Appreciation Dinner. This evening was filled with good food, great friends, and a delightful time of fun casino tables. It’s amazing how much fun you can have when you are playing with FUN money.

Many thanks to all of our leaders, donors, and supporters for everything they do to help make the IPTA, IPTF, and IPT-PAC better. We couldn’t accomplish what we do as an association without you!


Coming off the heels of achieving direct access in Illinois, this year’s CE course lineup focused on implementing direct access into various practice settings.

Some course highlights:

  • With the new changes in direct access to physical therapy in Illinois. PTs will now be at the forefront in evaluating and treating patients with vestibular disorders. Certified Vestibular Rehabilitation Specialists Mickey Shah, PT, D.Sc. OCS, FAAOMPT, Cert.MDT, CSCS, & Steven Tijerina, PT, DPT, Cert. VRT, presented a 3 hour course on  TO TREAT OR NOT TO TREAT: DIRECT ACCESS SAFETY WITH VESTIBULAR DISORDERS.
  • Janey Prodoehl, PT, Ph.D., & Judy Burton Hess, PT, DHS, OCS, provided insight on identifying common signs and symptoms that can present as musculoskeletal pain in different areas of the body that may necessitate referral to other health care professionals with their presentation on MEDICAL SCREENING, REFERRAL & EMERGENCIES IN THE OUTPATIENT SETTING.
  • With direct access comes great responsibility, especially with our older adult patients. Heidi Moyer, PT, DPT, CEEAA  & Andrew Thomas, PT, DPT, CSCS, CEEAA, COMT demonstrated this in their course on BALANCE AND FALLS MANAGEMENT IN OLDER ADULTS IN A DIRECT ACCESS WORLD: HOLDING OURSELVES TO A HIGHER STANDARD.

  • The members of IPTA’s Ethics Committee presented their course on GOT ETHICS? which allowed many PTs and PTAs to take advantage of learning more about fraud and abuse laws, the many ethics resources available to the physical therapy professional– and fulfill their new continuing education in ethics requirement.
  • Straight from APTA!  Direct Access is a game-changer, but how does it impact documentation? A must see presentation for any practicing PT was Alice Bell’s presentation on DEFENSIBLE DOCUMENTATION WITH DIRECT ACCESS.
  • Dr. Evan Plowgian, MD took attendees on a comprehensive look at the current approach to identify, treat and prevent the occurrence of concussion in the estimated millions of Americans – young and old – impacted by sports-related head injuries. In his course on SPORTS SCREENINGS AND REFERRALS: THE NEW WAY OF WORKING TOGETHER he reviewed sports screenings and how they apply to the new direct access guidelines in Illinois, especially as they relate to patients with various acute head injuries, including those that that result in vestibular disorders.
  • The recent passage of Direct Access into law makes the topic of ethics as it relates to the Physical Therapist’s role in Prevention and Health Promotion all that more critical. Sarah Greenhagen, PT, DPT, GCS  & Jason Robinson, PT, SCS, PES, CSCS ‘course on PRACTICAL ETHICS FOR PHYSICAL THERAPISTS IN PREVENTION AND HEALTH PROMOTION helped attendees learn how to execute ethical decision making related to health and wellness scenarios in the community/clinic setting.


7:00 AM wasn’t too early to deter the poster authors from getting their poster displays in place!  Attendees were treated to 15 research poster teams answering their questions between 8:00-9:00.  Many took advantage of earning 1 hour of CE by completing the poster quiz.

Back by popular demand was the poster competition where best posters were ranked on scientific rigor, poster layout, statistics and data analysis, and their relevance to physical therapy.

Our poster winners this year are:

  • First Place goes to Maggie Rehm, SPT and Janet Helminski, PT, PhD with their research on “Decreased Serum Vitamin D Potential Risk Factor for BPPV:  A Systematic Review
  • Second Place was awarded for “Weaning From Opioids Can Improve Patient Outcomes in an Interdisciplinary Comprehensive Pain Management Program” by Lisa Schwarz, PT, MHPE, OCS, ATC, and Silpa Katta, MD
  • Third Place winners were Nicole Viverito, PT, DPT; Liz Hampton, PT, DPT; Ann Flanagan, PT,PCS; Sahar Hassani, MS; Kim Hammerberg, MD; Purnendu Gupta, MD for their poster on “Short-term Outcomes of Scoliosis-Specific Exercise Program:  A Combined Clinical and Research Study.

Congratulations to all for their interesting and educational posters!


Congratulations to all of the 2019 IPTA Award Recipients! The IPTA is proud to have so many members who are dedicated to the advancement of the physical therapy profession.

All REVITALIZE attendees took part in recognizing a few of our outstanding members during the Awards Luncheon, held in conjunction with this year’s conference. IPTA President Mike Riley, PT and IPTF President, Sarah Jensen, PT presented several awards and recognized those members celebrating membership anniversaries!

  • Alice Salzman, PT, PhD is the recipient of this year’s Babette Sanders Leadership & Service Award.
  • Cori Zook -Arquines, PT, MHPE, CLT was named the 2019 Physical Therapist of the Year.
  • Andrew Strubhar, PT, PhD is the recipient of the new 2019 Outstanding Academic Educators Award.
  • Roshan Devarakonda, SPT and Morgan Lukert, SPT were both recognized as Outstanding PT Students of the Year.
  • And Emma Battaglia, SPTA took home the 2019 Outstanding PTA Student of the Year Award.

Congratulations to these awesome winners who are doing their part to REVITALIZE the practice of physical therapy. Read more about this year’s award winners by clicking here.

The Awards Luncheon continued to recognize outstanding members, as the Illinois Physical Therapy Foundation (IPTF) went on to present several student sponsorships and research grants.

Three Illinois researchers were each awarded $1,000 research grants. Dawn Drumm, PT for her research titled “Use of Tummy Time Intervention and Parent Education in Infants Born Preterm:  A Randomized Controlled Trial”.  Julie Schwertfeger, PT, DPT,MBA, CBIST, is using her grant for her project “Community Interventions for Stroke”. Richard Severin, PT, DPT, CCS, PhD(c), for his research project “Respiratory Muscle Performance:  A Predictor of Clinical Outcomes in Morbidly Obese Patients”.

Team Rehabilitation teamed up with the IPTF for a second year, to award students with $2,000 academic scholarships. The review committee had reviewed over 25 outstanding scholarship applications which were submitted, and were excited to award 5 students with scholarships this year. Congratulations to the following recipients: Lindsey Ardiff, SPT (Northwestern University); Ryan Pawloski, SPT (University of Illinois at Chicago); Amanda Baker, SPT (Bradley University); Jeni Boyarski, SPT (Midwestern University); and Melissa Mayer, SPTA (Oakton Community College).

The Awards Luncheon concluded with a special presentation of a new IPTF academic scholarship this year!

Julie Rosen, PT and her husband David Rosen established the Judith Harris & Dr. Monica Vohman Scholarship which was awarded to a first year DPT student who overcame challenges and financial need to become a physical therapist. Congratulations Danielle Washington, SPT from Governors State University who was chosen as the inaugural recipient.

President Mike Riley also took a few minutes to recognize our wonderful volunteers for taking on leadership roles and dedicating their time and service, as well as recognize IPTA/APTA members celebrating membership anniversaries from 5 to 70 years!  Click here to see who is celebrating a membership anniversary!


2019 was another good year for the District Challenge!  Last year we had tremendous enthusiasm during REVITALIZE as our direct access legislation was pending and had record donations. While we celebrated our success gaining direct access, many of our members still recognized the importance of the IPT-PAC and that we still have many legislative issues pending to further the physical therapy profession.  Thank you to all those that gave to IPT- PAC during REVITALIZE. Close to $5,000 was raised! Every gift makes a difference .

One district rose to the challenge and have ultimate bragging rights as the winner!  Southern district had 100% participation.  Many thanks to everyone who donated online, while renewing their membership, or at REVITALIZE.  Every contribution helps us to promote the physical therapy profession and show how we are striving to provide accessible, affordable, and quality physical therapy to the residents of Illinois.


This year at REVITALIZE, an ellite and exclusive gathering of exhibitors surrounded the welcome area of REVITALIZE. Our appreciation goes out to the following list of REVITALIZE Sponsors, Exhibitors, and Proud Partners of the IPTA!

Thank you to our Partners, Sponsors & Exhibitors

Athletico ATI ComcastSpotlight

Entropy Ivy Rehab Team Rehab WebPT


Catalyst PTS Inc NORTHERN REHAB Advanced



The SSIG put forth a tremendous effort to solicit 22 fabulous silent auction baskets with all proceeds going to support the IPTF.  The bidding was intense and over $1200 was raised to support the IPTF’s mission.  Thanks to everyone who bid and is supporting physical therapy research in Illinois, student scholarships, and patient education.


Representatives from across the state convened to take care of business during the 41st Annual Assembly of Representatives meeting. Assembly members voted on several items impacting not only the future of the IPTA but also the PT profession.

This year’s Assembly addressed several issues including jurisprudence, animal therapy, and the PT and PTA’s role in nutrition, along with a plan for evaluating our various opportunities for member involvement.

Special thanks to all of the Assembly Representatives and guests who attended.


Student members and guests who attended the Student Special Interest Group (SSIG) Annual Business Meeting were brought up to speed on all of the exciting initiatives the SSIG has taken on over the past 12 months – and open discussion for ideas for the future.

Current President of the SSIG, Ryan Pawloski SPT took the lead and moderated the meeting with reports from the other student leaders regarding – opportunities for students to attend national conferences, the rollout of the PT/PTA Toolkit, and a look at the growing involvement of SPT & SPTA membership in the IPTA.

Thank you to all of the current SSIG Executive Committee & Leadership members for planning this meeting – Ryan Pawloski, SPT; Geena Kerr, SPT; Alexis Funk, SPT; Melina Clark, SPT; Jackie Arceo, SPTA; Garrett Stroup, SPT; Kathryn McLeland, SPT; and Megan Lamphere, SPT.


The CE SIG, formally the CACEF, held their first annual business meeting since transforming to the CE SIG this year.  Several CE members were on hand to hear about the mission, vision, and objectives of this new SIG.  It is exciting that this SIG is now open to ALL Clinical Educators throughout the state and not just limited to the Chicago area.  Let’s hope the CE SIG grows so it can help all Clinical Educators collaborate in Illinois!


Mark your calendars —

As IPTA teams up with the Wisonsin Physical Therapy Association (WPTA) for a JOINT CONFERENCE on April 24-25, 2020 back at the Q Center in St. Charles, IL!