Connecting Physical Therapy Practice, Social Justice, and Health Equity

Start Date Saturday, September 30, 2023
Event Sep 30 2023 9:00am-4:30pm

Who should attend 

Physical therapists, physical therapist students, IHP faculty and students.



Sponsored by: MGH Institute of Health Professions Physical Therapy Department

This conference is designed to highlight the connection between physical therapy and social justice and health equity. We will introduce the social determinants of health—defined by the World Health Organization as the conditions under which people live, work, learn, and play—and explore how patients’ health and well-being can be viewed as socially constructed. We discuss the role of systems of oppression and location of position in generating health inequities and help participants develop strategies to intervene to promote health equity.  

At the end of this conference, participants will be able to: 

  1. Explain the constructs that make health a socially constructed phenomenon  
  2. Describe the social determinants of health and strategies to intervene at individual, interpersonal, and institutional levels to improve patients’ quality of life and promote health equity 
  3. Follow fundamental principles when screening for the social determinants of health  
  4. Articulate the role of systems of oppression and location of position in generating health inequities 
  5. Discuss how neighborhood characteristics influence population health.
  6. List resources for patients in the clinical environment and community that are related to the social determinants of health
  7. Compare and contrast the experience of the sheltered and unsheltered homeless 
  8. Identify which stage of homelessness a patient may be in and match the appropriate intervention at the level of the individual 
  9. Describe how physical therapists can identify patient goals and support patients to participate in ADLs and iADLS along the continuum from homelessness to housed. 
  10. Describe the resources physical therapists can leverage to support patients along the continuum from homelessness to housed.
  11. Explain the history, context, and mechanisms/pathways leading to health disparities for sexual and gender minority groups
  12. Define the term “microaggression” and identify common LGBTQIA+ micro-aggressions
  13. Identify strategies for responding to micro-aggressions and creating an inclusive environment in the classroom and clinic
  14. Identify the ethical and legal dilemmas associated with the biased patients 
  15. Describe the decision-making associated with responding to inappropriate patient requests including requests for specific clinicians 
  16. Describe the framework for responding to biased patients 

Contact PT [at] mghihp.edu with questions. 


Keshrie Naidoo, PT, DPT, EdD

Dr. Keshrie Naidoo PT, DPT, EdD (she/her)

Dr. Keshrie Naidoo PT, DPT, EdD, is an Associate Professor and the Interim Chair of the Physical Therapy Program at the MGH Institute of Health Professions. Her research focuses on social belonging, culturally responsive pedagogy, and equity in health professions education. Dr. Naidoo is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Physical Therapy Education.

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Justin wears a navy suit

Dr. Justin Wong PT, DPT, OCS (he/him)

Growing up in an immigrant household, Dr. Wong found a passion for serving Asian American communities through various volunteer and job opportunities in his upbringing. His academic practicum during his final year of graduate school focused on a Strength and Balance interventional program for Cantonese-speaking older adults in Boston’s Chinatown. He works as a board-certified orthopaedic clinical specialist at Spaulding Outpatient Center in Malden while also teaching as a lab instructor at MGH IHP’s physical therapy program. 

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lauren sits on a park bench and has long blonde hair

Lauren Rimmel, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS (she/her)

Dr. Rimmel is an outpatient physical therapist and recently completed a year-long public health fellowship to further develop her expertise in health inequity. Currently, she works at The Brigham and Women's Health Center in Chestnut Hill, where she sees patients with a variety of health conditions including orthopedic, vestibular, and oncology management. She also conducts clinical research to better understand the extent of racial inequity in physical therapy care.

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valerie wears braids and has brick red lipstick

Dr. Valerie Rucker-Bussie PT, DPT, NCS (she/her)

Dr. Rucker-Bussie has experience working in hospital-based outpatient, skilled nursing facilities, and private practice settings post-doctorally. She became a Board Certified Neurologic Specialist in 2020, and she primarily treats vestibular disorders, post stroke, brain injury, MS, Parkinson’s Disease, and neuropathies. She is involved in the local DC Chapter of the APTA as the co-chair of the Health Equity and Anti-Racism Team. 

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kamaria has glowing medium brown skin and wears a stethoscope

Dr. Kamaria Washington PT, DPT (she/her)

Dr. Washington is a proud product of Detroit, MI and is the founder, CEO, & Lead Therapist and Educator at Pelvic Noire Physical Therapy & Wellness in Detroit, MI. She serves the community as a Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist, a First Time Mom coach for black women, and an online maternal wellness educator. Her interest in this specialty peaked after an introduction to Black Maternal Mortality rates and how pelvic floor physical therapy can help this crisis.

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keelin has cropped hair that is spiky on top and wears glasses and silver earrings

Dr. Keelin Godsey, PT, DPT, CSCS (he/they)

Dr. Godsey is a Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Orthopedic Physical Therapy at Johns Hopkins hospital. He is the Coordinator of the Johns Hopkins Sports Physical Therapy Residency program. He has worked as a lab instructor at MGH’s Institute of Health Professions, and teaches about transgender health care. Dr. Godsey earned his Doctorate from Northeastern University in 2010, and completed his fellowship through Kaiser Permanente in Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy in 2020. Dr. Godsey is passionate about transgender health care and equity in sports. He was the first out transgender athlete competing in the NCAA. He represented the US National track and field team for the Pan-American games and has competed in the US Olympic trials twice as an out transgender athlete.

The APTA of Massachusetts has authorized the MGH Institute of Health Professions to issue 6 Continuing Education Credits for participation in “Connecting Physical Therapy Practice, Social Justice, and Health Equity.” If you are a clinical partner, alumnus, faculty or student of the MGH Institute of Health Professions, there is no charge to receive CEUs for this event. 

yellow circle says approved until sep 2024, APTA Massachusetts approved course, CEUL 122917