SACRAMENTO, Calif., Dec. 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- In February 2017, Assembly Bill (AB) 1510 was introduced by Assemblymember Matt Dababneh, D-Woodland Hills, providing for the licensure of athletic trainers to decrease misrepresentation of individuals claiming to be certified athletic trainers. Intending to improve safety for athletes by establishing an Athletic Trainer Licensing Committee within the California Board of Occupational Therapy, the bill is scheduled to be heard in January 2018.
The California Physical Therapy Association (CPTA) believes the safety of all athletes is important, however, is concerned about AB 1510 in its current form, which seeks licensure for athletic trainers AND establishes a scope of practice beyond their level of education and training. As written, AB 1510 would allow athletic trainers to evaluate and treat ANY individual who is physically active in ANY setting.
"Currently, athletic trainers are trained only to evaluate and treat athletes in an athletic setting under the supervision of a physician," said Government Affairs Committee Chair Chris Reed, PT, MPT, ATC, OCS. "AB 1510 would allow athletic trainers to address illness outside of an athletic environment and attempts to expand their scope of practice beyond their education and training."
Previous attempts by the California Athletic Trainers Association (CATA) to obtain licensure, also attempted to expand the athletic trainer's scope of practice beyond the athletic environment. These attempts were opposed by CPTA and other professional associations.
CPTA agrees that no individual should represent himself/herself as a certified athletic trainer without having acquired the proper education and training and supports granting title protection for certified athletic trainers, rather than an unnecessary licensing process.
"In the case of AB 1510, CATA has not demonstrated the need for yet another healthcare provider beyond the athletic setting," said CPTA President Christopher M. Powers, PT, PhD, FAPTA. "Title protection would ensure those who call themselves athletic trainers are actually certified and would give confidence to schools and parents that those providing care to their athletes are properly qualified to safely deliver that care."
SOURCE California Physical Therapy Association