- Physical Therapist Assistant or Aide
These projections are estimates based on data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
One of the most expanding fields in the medical industry is physical therapy. Assistants are constantly sought after to help the physical therapists which includes helping patients during their rehabilitation process. These PTAs (Physical Therapy Assistants) must aide people who have gone through minor through major trauma including people who have undergone accidents, burn patients, back pain, osteoarthritis, head and neck injuries, amputees, and people with more serious conditions such as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
PTAs must be trained to exercise these patients in a therapeutic way, giving therapeutic massage, evaluate and observe patients and maintain charts on the progress of individual patients. They must also be able to adjust or fit devices such as crutches or braces. Clerical and office duties are often needed, such as ordering supplies, completing forms and insurance applications and even answering phone calls from doctor’s offices and the patients themselves.
In order to become a physical therapy assistant, you must at least earn an associate’s degree in physical therapy assisting. There are many accredited physical therapy programs throughout the United States but the curriculum will vary greatly between programs. You will study the practice and theory of physical therapy but also have a rudimentary knowledge of medical science and general education. When you are in an accredited program, you must have a great deal of experience dealing hands-on while learning a clinical practicum.
If you truly want to have an advantage over other graduates, it is an excellent idea to volunteer as a physical therapist within certain facilities such as a geriatric facility. To succeed in your program, your overall knowledge of chemistry, biology, physiology, physics, first aid and social sciences will give you more recognition and set you apart from your colleagues.
An associate’s degree in physical therapy assistance does not require all that a physical therapist must endure. At a later date, if you decide that you want to become a physical therapist after graduating as a PTA, you might want to pursue PTA-to-PT accredited curricula.
Of course, to practice as a PTA, you have to obtain an associate’s degree from an accredited online PTA college. License prerequisites will vary within the fifty states besides earning your PTA degree. As you graduate, you might have to become certified in First Aid and CPR, for example and finish a minimum of practical work within a physical therapy organization.
Physical Therapy Associate’s Degree Programs Enrolling Now