The Role of Physical Therapy Assistants

The role of a physical therapy assistant is an important one. Physical therapy assistants perform essential duties and help the physical therapists (PT) with their patients and they also need to make sure that the clinic or the office is running smoothly. They perform many tasks that require special knowledge and skills, therefore it is important for them to be properly trained to work with patients with mobility problems.

The assistants work closely with the patients who suffer from any injury or illness that has affected their body's movements and mobility. Patients may be seriously injured in accidents or sports and there are also those who suffer from Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, arthritis, stroke and even cancer. Patients who have had surgery on their joints or hip also need therapy to heal quickly and properly. The PT assistants work under the direct supervision of the PT and are required to obtain special training and possess some essential qualities and characteristics. The ability to communicate well, patience and upper body strength will definitely help the assistants in performing their tasks more effectively.

Physical therapy assistants perform tasks that help patients to recover and also to help them feel more comfortable with their progress. Some of the tasks include teaching and helping patients in their wellness plans such as exercises and stretches. The PT assistants also need to operate equipments used and perform ultrasound, if needed. They are also trained to perform massages, document the patient's progress and other minor administrative duties.

The assistants should be of some level of fitness and strength as their daily duties involve a lot of standing, kneeling and lifting. They are sometimes required to work through long and even odd hours as they need to accommodate to a patient's therapy schedule. A PT assistant may find employment in a number of environments including rehab centers, hospices, outpatient wards, nursing homes and even in fitness centers. Some assistants are also known as traveling aides as they are required to travel to different locations and environments to perform therapy.

Job growth for PT assistants is expected to be good and on the rise with the increasing need and demand of therapy services. Technology and medical developments are saving more trauma victims thus creating the need for therapy and rehabilitative services. PT assistants have good prospects and they are paid by the hour. In the year 2008, the average annual wage of a PT assistant was over $40,000. The pay is also dependent on the assistant's experience and place of employment.

Physical therapy is a great occupation is a down economy. In addition, the physical pherapy assistant salary is on the rise. To find out more information on becoming a physical therapist assistant, please visit: =>

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