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By John Hobbs

Recap: APTA Combined Sections Meeting 2022

USC makes its mark on the annual event that brings together APTA’s 18 specialty sections and academies. 

IN EARLY FEBRUARY, THOUSANDS OF PHYSICAL THERAPY PROFESSIONALS AND STUDENTS from across the nation headed to San Antonio, Texas, for the American Physical Therapy Association’s first in-person Combined Sections Meeting since 2020.

The Combined Sections Meeting is the premiere physical therapy conference in the United States, bringing together 18 APTA specialty sections and academies for an action-packed weekend, full of educational programming, networking opportunities and awards presentations.

USC made its mark on the conference, leading a number of educational presentations, sharing research posters with their colleagues and taking home a few prestigious awards. 

Across the three-day event, Division faculty, staff and alumni spoke at 15 educational presentations — ranging in topic from anti-racism and equity to pelvic health to shoulder injury.

Additionally, Division faculty, staff and students contributed to 13 research posters displayed in the Exhibit Hall. The posters ranged in topic from early intervention in children with developmental delay to ways in which gut microbiota might contribute to Parkinson’s disease to themes of equity and diversity. 

Five Division members snagged awards. Associate Professor of Clinical Physical Therapy Kathryn Havens MS ’05, PhD ’13 earned the APTA CSM Academy of Pelvic Health Top Platform Award for her presentation, titled “Score Distribution of Urinary and Pelvic Organ Prolapse Distress Inventories in Postpartum Mothers.” The award-winning presentation was co-authored by Instructor of Clinical Physical Therapy Eileen Johnson and student Sonia Williams-Joseph DPT ’22, among others. 

Assistant Professor of Clinical Physical Therapy Danielle Long received the APTA CSM Academy of Pelvic Health President’s Award from the Clinical Practice Guidelines Steering Committee and Instructors of Clinical Physical Therapy Cooper Wardell DPT ’17 and Edwin Monroy earned awards from the Academy of Clinical Electrophysiology and Wound Management.

Finally, Assistant Professor of Clinical Physical Therapy & Surgery Stephanie Woelfel assumed the presidency of the Academy of Clinical Electrophysiology and Wound Management during the conference. The Academy of Clinical Electrophysiology and Wound Management is a component of the APTA, consisting of approximately 1,000 physical therapy practitioners and students interested in electrophysiology, biophysical agents, wound management and neuromusculoskeletal ultrasonography. 

Next year’s Combined Sections Meeting will take place on February 22-25 in San Diego, Calif.