The readers’ forum

Florida law ended an unfair monopoly

 

Re Carol M. Davis’ Nov. 18 letter, Dade Medical College’s plan hurts students and patients: The first word that comes to mind is “monopoly.”

When the amendment to Florida House Bill 1071 was passed, people should have stood up and cheered that a monopoly that had been in place for more than 25 years had been broken and that a new path for minorities and those born into less privileged circumstances could now aspire to be physical therapist assistants while still being able to care for their families and hold down full-time jobs. But the key to a monopoly is protecting it for those who benefit most.

The amendment to Florida HB 1071 did not diminish the quality of healthcare nor did it change a regulation for the benefit of one sector or organization over another. It removed a barrier to entry for many underserved communities in Florida that would never be granted that opportunity under the old status quo.

All the amendment did was allow for inclusion as opposed to the exclusive monopoly that Commission on Accreditation for Physical Therapy Education had on physical therapy education for a quarter of century. Dade Medical College grads still have to take and pass the same exam as graduates from CAPTE-accredited schools.

I am proud to say that the faculty and staff at Dade Medical College have received and held degrees from such respected state and national institutions as University of Florida, Florida State University, Florida International University, Nova Southeastern University, Barry University, Muhlenberg College, St. Thomas University, Miami Dade College, University of South Florida, Florida Atlantic University, Broward Community College, Georgia State University, University of Wisconsin, Carlos Albizu, Cornell University, Central Michigan University and Florida A & M University.

To say that professors at Dade Medical College are ill qualified to teach students when they themselves have graduated from traditional institutions accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education puts into question the very essence of its argument.

The commission can’t have it both ways.

Ernesto Perez, chairman,

Dade Medical College, Coral Gables

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