Physical Therapy Program Has a New Home: Chatham Eastside

JUNE 2012
Physical Therapy Program Has a New Home: Chatham Eastside
u Chatham Eastside
Chatham Eastside
exterior r
hatham Eastside is the University’s newest academic
facility and represents a significant investment in the
expanding graduate programs as well as the future development of East Liberty, one of Pittsburgh’s fastest-growing
and historic neighborhoods. This LEED-Silver renovation
project was completed in July 2009. The architects utilized
sustainable design practices, recycled materials,
and energy-efficient lighting to create an academic
and social space within a green environment.
As several of Chatham’s health science and
design programs continued to attract more students,
future growth was impeded because of limited
space on Woodland Road. After an intensive search
for potential sites near the University’s historic
campus, Chatham purchased 6585 Penn Avenue, the former
Eichleay Building, at the corner of Washington Boulevard
and Penn Avenue in September 2008. Acquisition of the
250,000 square foot building followed shortly after Eden
Hall Foundation donated the 388-acre Eden Hall Farm in
Richland Township to Chatham, thereby creating the largest
university campus in Allegheny County. Chatham Eastside
is now part of the University’s Shadyside Campus, which
includes the original Woodland Road location.
Less than a mile from Woodland Road, Chatham Eastside
houses the physical therapy teaching spaces and faculty
offices. In addition, the program still maintains anatomy lab
spaces on Woodland Road.
Transitional DPT Program Wrapping Up
fter twelve years of tremendous success and
acclaim, the Transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy
program will be completing its last class in August of
2012. The decision to close the program is based on
current trends within the physical therapy profession and
enrollment trends within Chatham’s TDPT program.
The program began in the fall of 2001 with a fulltime, semester-long cohort of MPT graduates who wanted
to continue their education and receive their doctorate.
After two years of running in this full-time manner, the
program’s popularity and demand grew to the point that
the format was changed to accommodate part-time students on the weekend. Online electives were later added
to enhance the convenience for practicing clinicians.
The program plans to celebrate its success by honoring the faculty and the 304 graduates with a dinner on
Saturday, September 22 during the Professional Development Weekend that is being planned (see the save the date
announcement on page 11).
The very talented faculty that have taught in this
program include: Dr. Barb Billek-Sawhney, Dr. Jennifer
Bottomley, Dr. Cathy Certo, Dr. Leesa DiBartola, Dr.
Gail Deyle, Dr. Steve Gough, Dr. Jake Magel, Dr. Greg
Marchetti, Dr. Bella May, Mr. Robert Monte, Dr. Ernie
Nalette, Dr. Sue Perry, Dr. Barb Sanders, Dr. Raj Sawhney,
Dr. Danny Smith, Dr. Chris Wells, and Dr. Sally Westcott.
In addition to many of the faculty, Dr. Ray Patterson, the
founding director of the TDPT program will be joining
2012 Transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy graduates Dr. Derek
Yeager and Dr. Wendy Burns with program director, Dr. Pat
Downey (center)
us in September for the celebration dinner. We hope that
many of the graduates will join us for this fun event!
PT Program Faculty and Staff
Melissa Bednarek, PT, PhD, DPT joined the faculty
as an Assistant Professor in 2009. She completed a
Bachelor of Science degree in biology and psychology
at St. Bonaventure University, a Master of Physical
Therapy degree at MCP Hahnemann University and a
Doctor of Philosophy degree in Physiology at Virginia
Commonwealth University. She also recently completed
a transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy degree at
Chatham University. Currently, Dr. Bednarek teaches
Fundamentals of Exercise Physiology, Management of
Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Dysfunction and Management of Multi-System Dysfunction. Her research
interests include incorporation of simulation technology
into physical therapy education, interprofessional education, and patient compliance in pulmonary rehabilitation
programs. In her free time, she enjoys outdoor activities
and traveling.
Patricia Downey, PT, PhD, DPT, OCS joined the
faculty part-time in 1994 and full-time in 1995. She
became an associate professor and program director
in 2005 and feels very grateful to have such a talented
group of faculty. Dr. Downey has been a physical therapist for over 30 years specializing in orthopedics and
women’s health. She has an advanced masters degree in
orthopedic physical therapy, a certified clinical specialization in orthopedics and a transitional DPT degree. She
also has a PhD in physical anthropology with an emphasis in functional anatomy and morphology. Dr. Downey
is a member of the APTA and belongs to the Orthopedic,
Education and Women’s Health Sections. She teaches
anatomy surface palpation, electrotherapy and part of the
orthopedic and women’s health curriculum. Her research
interests include women’s health, particularly bone
health and she has publications in Physical
Therapy, Journal of Orthopedic and Sports
Physical Therapy, Journal of Women’s
Health Physical Therapy, Physical Therapy
Education and Critical Reviews in Physical
and Rehabilitative Medicine. In her spare
time she enjoys spending time with her son
and 3-year-old granddaughter and traveling
with her partner.
Becky Hohman has been the physical
(From left to right) Front: Sarah Jameson, Judy Traister, Sue Perry;
therapy program assistant since 2001. She
Middle: Ann Williamson, Becky Hohman, Joe Schreiber, Melissa Bednarek,
is a 1970 graduate of Slippery Rock State
Steve Karas; Back: Jason Woollard, Pat Downey
College and received elementary education certification from Seton Hill College
Sarah continues to work as a clinician in home care
in 1980. She was employed as a teacher prior to joining
nursing and serves the PPTA as Chair of the
Chatham in March 1991. Becky was first employed in
Geriatric Special Interest Group. She keeps busy with
the Chatham Office of Admission before moving to the
the Geriatric Section as well. When not at work Sarah
health science programs. The year 2012 will conclude
enjoys movies, travel and the happy company of her
Becky’s time at Chatham, as she has announced her
busy family.
plans to retire at the end of September. She and her new
husband, Larry Keys, who also plans to retire in September, are looking forward to having time for traveling, Steve Karas, PT, DSc, CMPT, OCS has been an
assistant professor of physical therapy since 2008. He
family and friends, home improvements, and relaxation.
coordinates the introductory clinical skills along with
the movement science course. In addition, he teaches
Sarah Jameson, PT, DPT, GCS joined the faculty as
the spine content in the musculoskeletal course. Steve
a visiting assistant professor for the 2011-12 academic
graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a
year. She is a 2011 graduate of Chatham’s transitional
bachelor’s degree in athletic training and from Chatham
DPT program having attained her BS in PT and an MS
University with a Master of Physical Therapy. He
at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr Jameson coordinated
completed his Doctorate of Health Science from
two professional issues courses and served as a
Problem-Based Learning facilitator for Cardiopulmonary, Andrews University and received his certification in
manual physical therapy from the North American
Neurologic and Multisystem Dysfunction. She also
Institute of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy. His
assisted in the Neuromuscular lab.
Faculty and Staff, Continued from page 2
current research interests include specificity of technique
and knowledge translation of spinal manual therapy.
Personal interests include golf, running, and traveling
to The Turks and Caicos with his wife and daughter.
Ellen Marziale has held multiple positions at Chatham
University since 1998, where she was the Site Coordinator
for Chatham College North, a first-time off-campus venture for Chatham. When the Transitional DPT program
was initiated in September 2001, she became part of the
physical therapy program staff as the program assistant
and was instrumental in the development and growth of
the transitional program.
Ellen has a lifetime of professional and personal
accomplishments that includes owning and operating her
own business, “E Marziale Professional Office Services,”
and writing a children’s book titled “Pappy’s Star.” She
was a member of the conservator team that restored the
Romare Bearden tile mural, “Pittsburgh Recollections”
housed in the Pittsburgh Gateway subway station and
appraised at $15 million. As a life long learner, Ellen
vows to complete her bachelor degree in communications at Chatham in 2013. Ellen and her husband Hank,
a retired teacher, and their two children, Nickolas and
Kelsey, reside in Pine Township where she enjoys her
family, being outdoors and biking.
Susan B. Perry, PT, DPT, NES is an associate professor
of physical therapy and has been at Chatham University
since 1995. Her neurologic practice experience has
spanned 30 years and includes settings from the ICU
to outpatient rehabilitation. She currently works PRN
at HealthSouth Harmarville. Her principle areas of
research interest include upright mobility in stroke and
traumatic brain injury, as well as fall prevention. She is
currently vice president of APTA’s Neurology Section,
and is the 2012 APTA Education Section Distinguished
Educator of the Year. In her free time she enjoys travel,
good fiction, gardening, and her family (daughters are
16 and 20 now!).
Rajiv Sawhney, PT, DPT, OCS has been a part-time
faculty member since the physical therapy program
started in 1994. In addition to teaching in the musculoskeletal, movement sciences and imaging courses, Dr.
Sawhney is a Senior Executive Officer and Director of
Education for Allegheny Chesapeake Physical Therapy
and he sees patients at their Eastside office.
Dr. Sawhney received a BS in Physical Therapy
in 1982 and completed his MS in Orthopedic Physical
Therapy in 1989, both from the University of Pittsburgh.
Recently, he earned his transitional DPT from Chatham
University. He is certified by the American Physical
Therapy Association as a Clinical Orthopaedic Specialist.
Raj has lectured locally and nationally on topics related
to lower extremity dysfunction, foot orthotic management, gait, and spinal care. He maintains professional
memberships with the American Physical Therapy
Association and the Pennsylvania Physical Therapy
Joe Schreiber, PT, PhD, PCS recently completed his
11th year on the faculty at Chatham. In addition to
coordinating the research and pedicatric content in the
curriculum, he continues to work a half day per week at
the Children’s Institute of Pittsburgh in the pediatric outpatient department. His research focus is on identifying
effective mechanisms for assisting clinicians in translating research evidence into clinical practice and clinical
decision-making. He has published several manuscripts
and presented at national conferences on this topic. Dr.
Schreiber also recently completed a research project investigating the use of a parental satisfaction measure as
an outcome for pediatric physical therapy. Dr. Schreiber
continues to be very actively involved in the Section on
Pediatrics of the American Physical Therapy Association
and currently serves as President of the Section. He also
coaches soccer for his youngest daughter’s team and is
getting ready to send his oldest daughter off to college in
the fall. Finally, he continues to (somewhat unsuccessfully) attempt to apply key motor learning principles to
his golf game.
Judith Traister, PT, DPT, MA has been a Chatham
faculty member since 2001. She graduated from West
Virginia University with a BS degree; D. T. Watson
School of Physiatrics with a Certificate in Physical
Therapy; Duquesne University with a MA degree; and
Chatham University with a transitional DPT degree.
Since coming to Chatham she has been director of
clinical education and also taught in the Principles of
Practice courses. Her research agenda has centered
on partnerships with academia and clinicians. Since
August of 2009 she has been part-time and co-directed
the clinical education portion of the program with Dr.
Ann Williamson. She continues to be active in professional organizations.
Over the last four years she has traveled to
Guatemala with Surgicorps International on mission
trips and last year also accompanied them to Zambia.
During 2012 she will again join the group for trips to
Bhutan and Guatemala.
Ann Williamson joined core faculty in July of 2010
previously assisting as an adjunct instructor since 2006.
Recent Faculty Scholarship
Faculty and Staff, Continued from page 3
She is co-director of clinical education and continues to
teach in the cardiovascular & pulmonary and neurorehab
courses. She received both her master’s and doctoral
degrees in physical therapy from Chatham University.
In 2009, Ann received her specialization in neurologic
physical therapy and practices at UPMC St. Margaret.
Her research interests include the use of simulation
training in a DPT curriculum and knowledge translation
for clinicians. Ann has recently accepted a full time faculty position with Chatham which will start in August.
She has been an active member of the neurology
section of the APTA serving on the Practice and NCS
committees. In addition to Ann’s professional contribution,
she serves on the Board of Directors for the Woodland
Hills Foundation. In her spare time, she enjoys family
time with her 2 young sons: Reuven (3) and Ari (1) and
her husband Josh.
Bednarek ML, Speich JE, Miner AS, Ratz, PH. Active
tension adaptation at a shortened arterial muscle length:
inhibition by cytochalasin-D. Am J Physiol Heart Circ
Physiol 2011 Apr; 300(4): H1166-73.
Dr. Steve Karas:
Jason Woollard, MPT, PhD candidate, has been
a faculty member since 2010 and he coordinates the
musculoskeletal curriculum. Jason teaches in multiple
courses including Musculoskeletal, Foundations of
Movement Science and Research. A 1997 graduate of
Ohio Wesleyan University, he received his Masters in
Physical Therapy from Hahnemann University. This past
April, Jason successfully defended his PhD dissertation
at the University of Pittsburgh and will complete the
degree in August. His doctoral work examined presurgical predictors of outcome in individuals undergoing
rotator cuff surgery. Outside of work, Jason enjoys
traveling with his wife and children, trying to become
a better runner, and sports of all kinds.
Hawkins S, Hertweck, M, Bednarek M, Goreczny A,
Schreiber J, Sterrett S. Attitudes Toward Interprofessional
Education: Comparing Physician Assistant and Other Health
Care Professions Students. In press: The Journal of Physician
Assistant Education.
Perry SB, Downey PA. “Fracture Risk & Prevention: A
Multi-Dimensional Approach; Physical Therapy Journal
92:1-15 Published ahead of print September 15, 2011doi:
10.2522/​ptj.20100383; print version 1/2012.
Schreiber J, Perry S, Downey P, Williamson A.
Implementation of an Innovative Continuing Education
Program Focused on Translation of Knowledge into Clinical
Practice: A Case Report. In review- Journal of Physical
Therapy Education.
Schreiber J, Dole R. “The Effect of Knowledge Translation
Procedures on Application of Information from a Continuing
Education Conference.” Pediatric Physical Therapy. 2012.
In press
Schreiber J, Goodgold S, Moerchen V, Remec N, Aaron
C, & Kreger A. “A Description of Professional Pediatric
Physical Therapy Education.” Pediatric Physical Therapy.
2011; 23: 201-204
Schreiber J, Benger J, Salls J, Marchetti G, Reed L. “Parent
Perspectives on Rehabilitation Services for Their Children
with Disabilities: A Mixed Methods Approach” Physical &
Occupational Therapy in Pediatrics. July 2011. 31 (3): 225238
Woollard JD, Gil AB, Sparto P, Piva SR, Farrokhi S, Powers
C, Kwoh K, Fitzgerald GK. “Change in Knee Cartilage
Volume in Individuals Completing a Therapeutic Exercise
Program for Knee Osteoarthritis” J Orthop Sports Phys Ther.
2011; 41(10):708-22.
1. The effects of seated thoracic distraction as compared to
specifically targeted thoracic thrusts on cervical pain and
range of motion. 2. Evidence based treatment of pelvic
pain: comparison of orthopedic and antepartum populations:
Course Workshop. 3. Specificity of Spinal Manual Therapy:
A survey of manual Physical Therapists.
The International Federation of Orthopedic Manual
Physical Therapy & The World Conference of Manual /
Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy. Quebec City, 2012.
Dr Joe Schreiber: Accessing research evidence in pediatric
practice. Section on Pediatrics Second Annual Conference,
August 2011
Dr Joe Schreiber: The Great Debate: Is Evidence-based
Practice Feasible for Pediatric Clinicians? Section on
Pediatrics Second Annual Conference, August 2011
Dr Joe Schreiber: Standardized Tests and Measures
in Pediatrics: Selection, Interpretation, and Application
to Decision Making and Evaluation of Outcomes. PPTA SCD, May 2011
Dr. Ann Williamson: “Practice Based Evidence: What is it
and what role does it play in Neurologic Physical Therapy;
CSM Neurology Section Practice Issues Forum 2011.
Jason Woollard: “A Comparison of Shoulder Motion,
Torque, Pain and Self-Reported Function in Senior Olympic
Athletes with and without Full Thickness Rotator Cuff Tears”
Combined Sections Meeting of the APTA, Chicago, IL,
February 2012
The DPT Classes of 2012, 2013, and 2014
he Chatham DPT Class of 2012 is a
very tight-knit group of students. The
class is represented by students from many
states including Utah, Ohio, New York, and
Pennsylvania. Their undergraduate majors
range from business to exercise science to
psychology. The most common university
represented in our class is the University of
Pittsburgh with representation from other
schools such as Ohio State, Ohio University,
Dayton, Penn State University, Allegheny
College, and others. A few of the students
are participating in fellowships and faculty research projects. In addition, several classmates
work as physical therapy aides in local hospitals and outpatient clinics. They enjoy participating in the many extracurricular activities offered by Chatham such as intramurals, monthly
mug clubs, and Zumba classes. The class of 2012 is full of hard workers but they also take
time to enjoy each other’s company outside of the classroom.
he Chatham DPT Class
of 2013 is comprised of 38
students including seven men and
31 women ranging in age from
22 to 33. Several in the class are
pursuing second careers. They
encompass students from seven
states including as far away as
Michigan and Mississippi. Their
educational backgrounds also
vary – some have degrees in
business while others have been
practicing as PTA’s for several
years. Their dedication to the program is strong and diversity within the group has helped
bring them together since they all have different experiences to share. The energy in the class
is high, as well as our intellect. They are excited to begin clinical this upcoming summer;
great things should be expected.
hatham University will soon be welcoming
the DPT Class of 2014 in late August of this
year. We have 36 incoming students with a gender
make up of 12 men and 24 women. They represent nine different states including Rhode Island,
North Carolina and Arizona. Some of the undergraduate programs represented include: Penn State
University, University of Pittsburgh, Indiana State
University of PA, Slippery Rock University, Washington & Jefferson College, Allegheny College ,and
Ohio University, among others. The program looks
forward to welcoming this new group of students.
fAe gibson, DPT ’13, is awarded a
Pittsburgh Schweitzer Fellowship
The Pittsburgh Schweitzer Fellows Program
is one of only thirteen program sites across
the United States. fAe gibson was awarded
a fellowship for his project involving health
and wellness for people living with HIV/
AIDS. fAe will be organizing and conducting Qigong classes at Persad Center, the
local Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender counseling center. Qigong is the “parent” of Tai Chi and
involves breathing techniques and easy rhythmic movements for
people of all ages and health statuses. fAe plans on collecting pre/
post health data on participants and hopes that individuals in the
program will be able to integrate these techniques into their daily
lives for stress management and improved wellness.
Chatham University Physical Therapy
Education and Leadership Fund
Swen Sandberg, DPT ’12, participates in the Jonas Salk Fellowship
The Jonas Salk Fellowship is sponsored by
the Jewish Health Foundation and this year
the focus is on healthcare reform and what
healthcare professionals can do to improve
healthcare delivery. Swen Sandberg, class of
2012, applied and was chosen to participate
in this fellowship during the 2011-2012
academic year. Some highlights from this
year’s fellowship included guest speaker Paul O’Neill,
the 72nd Secretary of the U.S. Treasury, Pittsburgh
Regional Health Initiative co-founder, and previous CEO
of Alcoa. He spoke to members of the fellowship on how
to become inspired and passionate leaders.
Another highlight this year was the debates
held for the first time in lieu of a final project.
Fellows debated on such topics as the current
healthcare payment system, the Affordable
Care Act, and whether or not healthcare
professionals receive the necessary training
to deliver high-quality care. The fellowship
was an incredible opportunity to broaden Swen’s understanding of healthcare deliver and to gain experience as
a future healthcare professional.
elebrate everything you got from your
Chatham education and support learning
opportunities and professional development
for Physical Therapy students with a gift to the
Physical Therapy Education and Leadership
Fund. Your gift will help to support current PT
students’ education and leadership development
To give, visit
and fill in Physical Therapy Program Fund under where to direct your support. Thank you for
supporting our students.
Clinician-Educator Award: Dr. Steve Gough
r. Steve Gough was honored
by the Class of 2011 at the
December 2011 Doctor of Physical
Therapy Recognition Awards
Ceremony. This award was given to
Steve Gough in recognition of his
18 years of part-time teaching with
the program. In addition to his excellent teaching in the musculoskeletal
and leadership courses, he will be
remembered for years to come for his
infamous “Lemon Lab.”
Dr. Steve Gough introducing the “Lemon Lab”
Fred Rogers Good Neighbor Award
n the spring of 2011, Chatham University received one of the first
Fred Rogers Good Neighbor Awards for student involvement in
community volunteerism in the United Way’s Open Your Heart to A
Senior Project. The Doctor of Physical Therapy program has had many
students participate in the Safety for Seniors project, which was recognized as a significant factor in this award. As can be seen by the photo,
the award plaque contained an actual pair of tennis shoes signifying
those worn by Mr. Rogers.
Christopher Brehm, MPT ’99, DPT ’06, OCS, ATC
r. Brehm is a 1999 Chatham
University MPT graduate and
a 2006 transitional DPT graduate.
Chris started his clinical practice
working in home health care and
outpatient orthopedics. In 2002, he
joined Lifeline Therapy where, as
Perry Tallman PT, DPT ’04,
r. Tallman earned his undergraduate degree in
physical therapy with a certificate in athletic
training from the University of Montana in 1984,
and received his DPT from Chatham University in
2004. He was originally board certified in sports PT
in 1991, re-certified in 2001 and 2011, and became
board certified in orthopedics in 2006. He has worked
in private practice since 1989, becoming a practice
owner in 1991. His practice specialty is in orthopedic
and sports PT, with a strong emphasis on manual
techniques in a one-on-one setting.
Dr. Tallman is married to Becky, and they have
three wonderful children, Matt (18), Brett (16) and
Katie (14). Life has been busy with college trips,
sporting events and music concerts (band and choir),
with rounds of golf peppered in whenever possible!
general manager, he had the oppor-tunity to manage
and grow their existing pulmonary rehabilitation
program and start the orthopedic program. In 2007,
Dr. Brehm bought Lifeline Therapy and currently is
the sole owner/president of the company. Lifeline is a
CORF with 16 employees working in four locations in
the Pittsburgh area.
In addition to receiving his transitional DPT degree, Dr. Brehm became a Certified Clinical Specialist
in Orthopedic Physical Therapy. He regularly attends
the APTA’s Combined Section Meetings along with the
PPTA conferences. In his spare time, he enjoys exercising, golfing, and watching and attending sporting events.
Nicole Stout, MPT ’98, CLT-LANA
icole Stout is a 1998 Chatham
University MPT graduate.
Ms. Stout is an oncology specialty
physical therapist and clinical
researcher. She is currently the
principal investigator on two clinical
trials studying upper extremity
morbidity associated with breast
cancer treatment at the Breast Care Center at the Walter
Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda,
Maryland. Her research findings and publications
have been foundational in developing the Prospective
Surveillance Model for breast cancer rehabilitation.
Ms. Stout has lectured and taught internationally
on lymphedema and cancer rehabilitation and she holds
adjunct faculty appointments at several universities.
She holds appointments on the State of Maryland Cancer Control committee and the American Lymphedema
Framework steering committee in addition to the International Compression Consensus group. Currently
Ms. Stout is also an elected member of the Board of
Directors of the American Physical Therapy Association
and serves as a Media Spokesperson for the Association.
She has served as a medical expert in lymphedema and
breast cancer rehabilitation for public media outlets
including; Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Cure
Magazine, Advance Magazine, BreastCancer.Org and
others. She has authored and co-authored over two
dozen articles and book chapters about breast cancer
rehabilitation and lymphedema and she is the co-author
of the book 100 Questions and Answers about Lymphedema. She is an internationally recognized expert in
breast cancer morbidity and early intervention models
of care for cancer-related functional impairments.
“I am energized everyday by working in a profession that lets me help people recover their function and
their lives during and after cancer treatment. Working
with people with cancer has changed my life and made
every day a blessing. The advice that I give to younger
professionals who want to build their careers is to ‘go
for it.’ Always be ready and willing to step through the
door that opens, it might represent an opportunity that
will guide you to the best part of the rest of your career.”
Ms. Stout enjoys golf and yoga. She loves to attend
minor league baseball games when she travels and, most
importantly, she is widely known as the greatest aunt in
the world to her two nephews; Jake and Owen Conroy
of Elrama, PA.
Clinical Update: Gait Speed
Dr. Susan Perry
Q: What clinical measure is quick, simple,
cheap, and a better predictor of health outcomes
than blood pressure?
A: Gait speed.
Over the past 10 years or so there has been an
explosion of research about the decline and
recovery, predictive validity, and effective treatment of gait speed (GS).
MEASUREMENT: Likely the most common
method for measuring GS is the 10 meter walk
test (10MWT). The client is asked to walk at a
self-selected pace a distance slightly greater than
10m. A stop-watch is used to time the middle
10m, and GS is calculated in m/s.1 GS can also
be measured using a 4MWT in a similar manner,
or can be measured as the patient’s “fastest safe
pace”. Test conditions (i.e., self-selected vs. fast
pace) should be documented. Gait speed is valid,
reliable, and sensitive to change.2
1 Fritz S. Lusardi M. White paper: walking speed: the sixth vital
sign. J Geriatric Phys Ther. 2009;32(2):2-5
2 Steffen TM. et al. Age- and gender-related test performance in
community-dwelling elderly people: six-minute walk test, Berg
balance scale, Timed Up & Go test, and gait speeds. Phys Ther.
3 Chui K. Lusardi M. Spatial and temporal parameters of self-selected and fast walking speeds in healthy community-living adults aged
72-98 years. J Geriatric Phys Ther. 2010;33(4):173-183
4 Purser JL. et al. Identifying frailty in hospitalized older adults with
significant coronary artery disease. JAGS. 2006;54(11):1674-1681
INTERPRETATION: Published norms for GS
exist for many age groups including communitydwelling elders.3 An optimal community
ambulation speed is 1.2-1.4m/s. People who
walk < 0.6m/s are more likely to be hospitalized,
fall, or be restricted to ambulation in the home
only. Those with a GS of > 1.0m/s are functional
ambulators in the home and community, and are
less likely to have an adverse event.1 In those
with impaired GS, an increase or decrease of
0.1m/s over 1 year is predictive of well-being or
poor health status, respectively.4 The minimal
clinically important difference in GS is 0.10m/s
in patients post-hip fracture5, and 0.16m/s poststroke.6
and high dosage aerobic and strengthening
(especially hip flexors and plantar flexors) exercise,
gait-oriented training with or without a treadmill,
FES, and daily measurement/reinforcement about
GS are all evidence-based methods to improve GS.7
5 Sicard-Rosenbaum L. et al. Gait, lower extremity strength, and
self-assessed mobility after hip arthroplasty. Gerontol A Biol Sci Med
Sci. 2002;57(1):M47-M51
6 Tilson JK. et al. Meaningful gait speed improvement during the
first 60 days poststroke: minimal clinically important difference.
Phys Ther. 2010;90:196-208
7 Dickstein R. Rehabilitation of gait speed after stroke: a critical
review of intervention approaches. Neurorehab Neural Repair. 2008;
Chatham PT partners with STAR
for Simulation Training
n January 2011, in collaboration
with the Master of Physician Assistant Studies program, the Doctor of
Physical Therapy program at Chatham
University was awarded a two-year
grant from the Highmark Foundation
to incorporate simulation training into
the curriculum. Funding was received
for three simulation experiences that
were planned to be a part of the Management of Cardiovascular and
Pulmonary Dysfunction course, which includes acute care content.
A series of three scenarios were developed that each student would
participate in while in a small group. The scenarios were developed
along the continuum of acute care, beginning with a patient experiencing a COPD exacerbation on a medical/surgical floor and ending
with a patient experiencing respiratory distress and on a ventilator
in the intensive care unit (ICU). Students first reviewed the patient’s
chart and then proceeded to
interview the patient, as able.
This information was then
added to the results of their
physical therapy examination to develop a prioritized
treatment for the patient.
Scenarios lasted between
15-30 minutes and included the use of a high-fidelity simulation
(Laerdal SimMan 3G) with many life-like characteristics including
the presence of abnormal lung sounds and vital signs. Students were
assessed on their performance and a debriefing with an instructor
occurred immediately following each scenario. Additionally, data
collection related to student confidence evaluating and treating
patients in the ICU is ongoing at multiple time points in the curriculum to determine what, if any, effect the simulation experiences have
on the ability for entry-level physical therapy students to confidently
and safely practice in an acute care/ICU setting.
Knowledge Translation
Dr. Joe Schreiber
ave you ever felt as though you couldn’t wait to get back to the
clinic to start applying information from a continuing education
conference, and to share the information with your colleagues? In
thinking back over my professional career, there have been a number
of conferences and other educational opportunities that at the time felt
“life-changing.” The information was great, the speaker was excellent,
and the room was filled with engaged and motivated professionals who
were as enthusiastic as I was about the content. But then on Monday
morning, the realities of a busy clinic schedule, a faulty memory, and
co-workers who did not share my enthusiasm often resulted in little, if
any, change in the way I was practicing or in the standard practice at
my clinic. So much for “life-changing.”
As professionals, we are faced with the challenge of changing
and improving our clinical practice on an almost daily basis. We’re
expected to regularly read and understand the latest research, attend
continuing education conferences and get CEU’s, and integrate new
knowledge and skills into what we’re already doing. In addition, when
our employer pays for our continuing education, we’re expected to
share this information with our co-workers and try to help them change
and improve as well. But the reality is that changing the way we do
things every day can be really difficult, and convincing others to change
is often even harder.
Recently, members of the Chatham physical therapy faculty have
been engaged in implementing and evaluating the effectiveness of
knowledge translation strategies aimed at helping busy clinicians
translate knowledge into clinical practice for themselves and their
co-workers. The outcomes of this research and other work in this area
are summarized in the table below. The references listed below the
table are also a good resource for this content area. It is our hope that
by helping practitioners think explicitly about making specific practice
changes and using a structured process to support this, that continuing
education and professional development will be more effective at
improving the care we’re providing for the patients and clients we
Build Consensus
Work with colleagues and administrators to identify mutually agreed upon and important
practice change needs; organizational buy-in critical
Publicize the practice change goal; measure baseline outcomes related to the goal; incentivize
Identify, engage, and support knowledge brokers (change agents) who are willing to work
toward the practice change goal
Identify strategies to address practice change goal: attendance at continuing education
courses, gathering and analyzing research articles, obtaining published clinical practice
guidelines, etc.
Create Practice Change
Activities & Materials
Repeated workshops & active learning activities (more effective than traditional
“one-off” lectures or in-services)
Training Manual: describe steps involved in the practice change; consider use of pictures,
drawings, and other media; ensure easy access to the manual
Website: additional practice change materials available for download; discussion board to
post comments about the practice change
Newsletter: venue to describe practice changes; user friendly reminders to support the
change; publicize results of the change
Support staff
Empower to change
Identify and address potential barriers
Encourage Informal
Create, support, and participate in opportunities for informal interaction among staff
Identify and measure meaningful outcomes related to the change; publicize results
Schreiber J, Downey P, Traister J. Academic program support for
evidence-based practice: A mixed-methods investigation. Journal of
Physical Therapy Education. 2009;23(1):36-43.
Schreiber, J, Perry S, Downey P, Williamson A Implementation of
an Innovative Continuing Education Program Focused on Translation of Knowledge into Clinical Practice: A Case Report. In review,
Journal of Physical Therapy Education
Schreiber J & Dole R. The Effect of Knowledge Translation Procedures on Application of Information from a Continuing Education
Conference. Pediatric Physical Therapy. 2012 (Summer- in press)
Menon A, Korner-Bitensky N, Kastner M, McKibbon K, Straus S.
Strategies for rehabilitation professionals to move evidence-based
knowledge into practice: a systematic review. Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine. 2009;41:1024-1032.
Russell D, Rivard L, Walter S, et al. Using knowledge brokers to
facilitate the uptake of pediatric measurement tools into clinical
practice: a before-after intervention study. Implementation Science.
Ketelaar M, Russell D, Gorter JW. The challenge of moving evidence-based measures into clinical practice: Lessons in knowledge
translation. Phys Occup Ther Pediatr. 2008;28:191-206.
Clinical Education
Members of the Class 2011 and faculty at the annual Perry Pool Party
Grand Rounds
Dr. Steve Karas
hatham’s DPT program hosts a Grand
Rounds presentation every term. The program invites master clinicians to present patient
cases that demonstrate the critical thinking and
clinical decision-making process that goes into
patient/client examination and evidence-based
interventions. The Grand Rounds generally start
with a 7:00 a.m. continental breakfast followed
by the presentation from 7:30-8:30 a.m. Area
clinicians and alumni are always invited to join
the students and faculty and CEU’s are awarded.
Recent presenters include Dr. Janet Bezner, PT,
PhD, the deputy executive director for the APTA
who presented on Health and Wellness Promotion; Amy Szalinski, PT, NCS from Health South
Hamarville who presented on rehabilitation after
brain injury, and Keelan Ensecki, PT,OCS, SCS,
CSCS, who presented on rehabilitation of the hip.
Please contact Dr. Steve Karas ([email protected]
edu) if you would like to be on our e-mail invitation list or if you have an interest in presenting
an interesting patient case at an upcoming Grand
The next Grand Rounds presentation is scheduled for Friday, July 6 at 7:30 a.m. in the Mellon
Board Room. 1998 Chatham alumna Nicole
Stout, PT, MPT, CLT-LANA will be presenting:
“Prospective Surveillance for Breast Cancer Rehabilitation: PT intervention from diagnosis through
treatment.” Please join us.
Dr’s Judy Traister and Ann Williamson co-direct the
Physical Therapy Clinical Education Program with the
continued goal of enhancing the quality of clinical education.
The program now uses a Web-based electronic instrument
developed by the APTA to evaluate student performance on
clinical affiliation (APTA PT CPI Web). The tool was adapted
from the paper version also developed by the APTA. This
electronic tool has enhanced timely communication with the
students and the Clinical Instructors regarding the students’
The program works to establish new high quality,
evidence-based clinical education sites. We continue to keep
a strong stakeholder in local and regional sites, we have also
increasingly supported second year students’ interest in
completing distant affiliations including California, Florida,
and New Mexico just to name a few in recent years. The program values the mentorship of Clinical Instructors and finds
Chatham alumni to consistently be a great fit with Chatham’s
clinical experience philosophies. If you are interested in
mentoring Chatham DPT students we would love to hear
from you!
[email protected] or [email protected]
Do you have professional news? Are you interested in
accessing the online directory? In order to get the most
up to date information from your alma mater, please be
sure to keep your contact information updated with the
Office of Alumni Relations.
Keep in touch with Chatham and your classmates by visiting There you can become a
member of the alumni directory, view and share classnotes,
as well as register and pay for events online! Contact
[email protected] for your unique ID needed to login!
Save the Date
Physical Therapy Program
Professional Development Weekend
September 22 & 23, 2012
Saturday, September 22, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. • Musculoskeletal Imaging for the Primary Care PT: Dr. Gail Deyle
Sunday, September 23, 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Choose from one of the following courses:
• Evidence for Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy in the Care of the Patient with Osteoarthritis
of the Hip and Knee: Dr. Gail Deyle
• Differential Diagnosis and Manual Therapy Interventions for Common Cervico-thoracic and
Lumbosacral Spine Disorders: Dr. Raj Sawhney
• Standardized Tests and Measures for Pediatric Physical Therapy Practice: Which tool should
I use, when should I use it, and what should I do with the results: Dr. Joe Schreiber
• Updates in Vestibular Rehabilitation: Dr. Anne Mucha
Details to follow; for additional information contact Becky Hohman at [email protected]
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