Physical Therapist Assistants (PTAs) are healthcare professionals who work under the supervision of licensed physical therapists
(PTs) to help patients recover from physical injuries and disabilities. Their role is to support the PTs in providing hands-on care to patients, implementing treatment plans, and helping patients achieve their therapy goals.
Here are some of the duties and responsibilities of a PTA:
Overall, PTAs play a crucial role in helping patients recover from physical injuries and disabilities, and they work closely with PTs
to provide comprehensive care and support to patients.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of Physical Therapist Assistants (PTAs) is projected to grow 33
percent from 2020 to 2030, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is driven by several factors, including an aging population, advances in medical technology, and an increased focus on preventive care.
As the baby boomer generation continues to age, there will be an increased demand for PTAs to help them recover from injuries and
illnesses and manage chronic conditions such as arthritis and diabetes. Additionally, advances in medical technology and research will create new opportunities for PTAs to work with patients who have complex medical conditions or disabilities.
Overall, the job outlook for PTAs is very positive, and there is expected to be a high demand for qualified PTAs in the coming years.
This makes it a great career choice for those who are interested in healthcare and enjoy working with patients to help them achieve their therapy goals.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Physical therapist assistants held about 96,500 jobs in 2021. The largest employers of
physical therapist assistants were as follows:
Offices of physical,
Hospitals; state, local,
Home healthcare services
Nursing care facilities
Offices of physicians
Physical therapist assistants are frequently on their feet and moving as they set up equipment and help and treat patients.
Because they must often lift and move patients, they are vulnerable to back injuries. Assistants can limit these risks by using proper techniques when they work with patients.
The salary expectations for physical therapist assistants (PTAs) can vary depending on factors such as experience, location, setting, and employer. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for PTAs in the United States was $59,770 as of May 2020. The lowest 10% earned less than $36,080, while the highest 10% earned more than $88,050.
PTAs working in certain healthcare settings, such as home healthcare services or outpatient care centers, may earn higher salaries than those working in other settings such as nursing care facilities or hospitals. Location is also an important factor that can affect salary expectations for PTAs. PTAs working in metropolitan areas or states with higher costs of living may earn higher salaries than those in rural areas or states with lower costs of living.
It’s important to note that PTAs work under the supervision of licensed physical therapists (PTs) and may earn different salaries depending on the PT’s pay structure and the specific job duties assigned. In some cases, PTAs may also receive benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off.
Overall, while salaries for PTAs may not be as high as those for licensed PTs, the field offers a rewarding career path with opportunities
for growth and advancement, as well as competitive salaries and benefits.
To become a Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA), you typically need to complete an accredited PTA program and obtain an associate
degree in PTA. Here are the education requirements for PTAs in the United States:
Overall, becoming a PTA requires a combination of classroom and clinical education, as well as licensure and continuing education to maintain your skills and knowledge.
Go to the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) for more licensing requirements.
Physical therapist assistants (PTAs) can specialize in various areas of physical therapy based on their interests and the needs of their patients. Here are some areas of specialization for PTAs:
Overall, PTAs work under the supervision of licensed physical therapists and collaborate with other healthcare professionals to provide patient care. They may also need to obtain additional certifications or licenses to specialize in certain areas of physical therapy.
Physical Therapist Assistants (PTAs) can work in a variety of settings, including:
Overall, PTAs can work in a variety of settings, depending on their interests and specialties. They work closely with physical therapists
to provide hands-on care to patients and help them achieve their therapy goals.