Become a Member

We are always looking for interested physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and students to join the Acute Care Section. You must be an APTA member to join the Acute Care Section.

THE MISSION of the Acute Care Section of the American Physical Therapy Association is to foster excellence in acute care practice, in all settings, in order to enhance the health and functioning of patients and clients.


Acute care physical therapy is provided by physical therapists who:

  • As integral members of the health care team, are consulted for their expertise in patient management and clinical decision making for patients with acute health care needs.
  • May be board-certified specialists in acute care physical therapy.
  • May be assisted, in a team relationship, by physical therapist assistants, who may be recognized for advanced proficiency.

The Acute Care Section of the American Physical Therapy Association is recognized as the expert resource for the provision of evidence-based acute care physical therapy. 

Current priorities

By joining the Acute Care Section, you’ll support the following goals:

  • Promote the development and improvement of acute care physical therapy practice, education and research.
  • Promote clinical and professional excellence in treating patients with acute health care needs across all practice settings and across the lifespan.
  • Pursue recognition of acute care practice as a specialization area
  • Develop a career pathway for the acute care practitioner that includes the development of entry-level PT and PTA competencies.
  • Support the development of acute care residencies and fellowships
  • Foster acute care research through section research grants and poster/platform awards. 

Why should you join?

There are many valuable resources available to members of the Acute Care Section:

  • Access to resources guides highlighting common acute care practice and management issues.
  • The latest in peer-reviewed acute care research through the section’s Journal of Acute Care Physical Therapy (JACPT).
  • Acute care updates and opportunities within Critical EdgEmail, the section’s monthly e-newsletter.
  • Access to 4 listservs --Total Joint Replacement SIG, Emergency Department, Intensive Care Unit, and a general listserv-- that connect you with acute care colleagues and information.
  • Discounts on continuing education and practice resources provided by the section.
  • Eligibility for volunteer leadership positions within the section and for section awards recognizing clinical excellence, distinguished service, and leadership.

Already an APTA member, but not an Acute Care Section member?

You do not have to wait until your APTA renewal to join the Acute Care Section. You can join the Acute Care Section instantly and at a pro-rated price dependent on your APTA membership renewal date.
Go here and click on "Add a Section" under Chapters & Sections.  Again, your dues will be pro-rated based on your APTA membership renewal.

Neither an APTA member nor an Acute Care Section member?

You must be an APTA member to join the Acute Care Section. Complete your membership application online and remember to join the Acute Care Section at the same time.

 Join APTA


Member Benefits
  • Subscription to Journal of Acute Care Physical Therapy
  • Critical EdgEmail, monthly e-newsletter
  • Educational programming at reduced member rates 
  • Resources to succeed in practice
  • Networking specific to acute care
  • Total Joint Replacement SIG
  • Emergency Department focus group
  • Intensive Care Unit focus group
  • Members Only web resources
  • Leadership opportunities
  • Five listservs
  • Employers--20% off Career Center fees
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