Life As a Physical Therapist
Career Description Assess, plan, organize, and participate in rehabilitative programs that improve mobility, relieve pain, increase strength, and improve or correct disabling conditions resulting from disease or injury.
A Day in the Life of a Physical Therapist (PT)
- Record prognosis, treatment, response, and progress in patient’s chart or enter information into computer.
- Instruct patient and family in treatment procedures to be continued at home.
- Administer manual exercises, massage, or traction to help relieve pain, increase patient strength, or decrease or prevent deformity or crippling.
- Conduct or support research and apply research findings to practice.
- Direct group rehabilitation activities.
- Identify and document goals, anticipated progress, and plans for reevaluation.
Physical Therapist (PT) Needed Skills
When polled, Physical Therapists say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:
Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.
Related Job Titles for this Occupation:
- Rehabilitation Services Director
- Registered Physical Therapist (RPT)
- Orthopedic Physical Therapist
- Staff Physical Therapist (Staff PT)
- Pulmonary Physical Therapist
Physical Therapist (PT) Employment Estimates
In 2016, there was an estimated number of 239,800 jobs in the United States for Physical Therapist. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 28% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 67,100 new jobs for Physical Therapist by 2026. The BLS estimates 17,700 yearly job openings in this field.
The states with the most job growth for Physical Therapist (PT) are Utah, Arizona, and Colorado. Watch out if you plan on working in Rhode Island, Kansas, or Maine. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.
What is the Average Salary of a Physical Therapist (PT)
The typical yearly salary for Physical Therapists is somewhere between $60,390 and $123,350.
Physical Therapists who work in Nevada, California, or Alaska, make the highest salaries.
How much do Physical Therapists make in different U.S. states?
|State||Annual Mean Salary|
|District of Columbia||$89,750|
Tools & Technologies Used by Physical Therapists
Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Physical Therapists:
- Microsoft Excel
- Microsoft Word
- Microsoft Office
- Microsoft Outlook
- MEDITECH software
- Medical procedure coding software
- Medical condition coding software
- Recordkeeping software
- Rehab Documentation Company ReDoc Suite
- Prognosis Innovation Healthcare ChartAccess
How do I Become a Physical Therapist (PT)?
Education needed to be a Physical Therapist:
How Long Does it Take to Become a Physical Therapist (PT)?
Where Physical Therapists Work
Below are examples of industries where Physical Therapists work:
Other Jobs You May be Interested In
Those thinking about becoming a Physical Therapist might also be interested in the following careers:
Image Credit: Barbara E. Carver via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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