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Physical Therapy Assistants – Who Are Physical Therapist Assistants

Physical therapy assistants are healthcare providers that help physical therapists in providing care and treatment to patients or clients. They are also called PTAs or physical therapist assistants. A physical therapy assistant often works under the supervision and direction of a licensed physical therapist.

A physical therapy assistant can help the physical therapist "provide exercise instructions; therapeutic methods like electrical stimulation, mechanical traction, and ultrasound; massage; and gait and balance training." 1 In addition, the PTA will also record the client’s responses to treatment and report to the physical therapist the outcome of each treatment provided.

The physical therapy assistant will provide specific treatments to the client, according to the treatment plan created by the licensed physical therapist.

Job Outlook and Salary

Employment for physical therapy assistants is very good, which is expected to grow by as much as 33 percent by 2018. Physical therapy assistant mean annual salary was estimated to be about $49,810 in May of 2010.2

See Also

Suggested Readings

Sources:
  1. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition, Physical Therapist Assistants and Aides. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos167.htm (visited July 03, 2011).

  2. Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2010: 31-2021 Physical Therapist Assistants. Unites States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes312021.htm (visited July 03, 2011).


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