Physiotherapy Clinical Practitioner

The most popular job to land as a physical therapist would be in a hospital, outpatient clinic or in homecare, most commonly known as clinical practice. To be able to qualify for clinical practice a therapist must have earned a diploma in physical therapy from an accredited college or university and must have passed the designated board exams. Certified physical therapy programs offer both master’s degrees and doctorates in physical therapy. Applicants need bachelor's degrees that include prerequisite courses, which are set by each graduate program and vary from one educational institution to another. Some states or regions require certifications or degrees in continuing education to be able to maintain a physical therapy license.

Physical therapists usually work in sanitary and comfortable environments because most patients are in hospitals although some therapists do have to make home visits to their patients. Physical therapists should be encouraging and supportive since some patients are permanently disabled. It is the job of the physical therapist to make sure that the patient’s functional capacities are maximized. Physical therapists also make sure that treatment plans are carried out properly by assistants or aides or make the necessary revisions in the treatment plan and goal- setting of a patient. Therapists also keep records and write reports on the progress of each patient. A day in the clinic practice for a physical therapist is actually like a routine. Patients come in and primary and follow- up assessments are done, documented and treatment plans are revised or started. The clinic has everything the therapist needs from modalities to ambulation devices and so every therapist must be well-oriented with the new technology in health care. Operation of these new machines has different parameters so therapists must also be able to memorize the materials they are working with. When it comes to patient interaction, therapists must be patient as most of the people they treat belong to the senior-aged bracket and those who need long term care. Most patients with debilitating conditions are also hard to encourage and please so the psycho-social adaptations of a therapist must be fast. For therapists with administrative work in the clinics and hospitals, it is expected that they have great ability to manage and organize the whole working team. They monitor all patients, documentations, the people who work under them, complaints and more. Most physical therapists work forty hours per week. Those who prefer flexible hours can usually find private, part-time or consulting work. For these reasons, all physical therapists are expected to be in good health and shape.

Physical therapists are well-compensated. This profession has a very good employment outlook with a salary averaging $60,180 per year (in the US). Plus, therapists can choose to accommodate patients requiring private home care which adds even greater to the salary they receive. The demand is also expected to increase since the increasing senior population requires rehabilitative care. Also, increasing number of congenital defects and conditions, motor-vehicle accidents, disabling diseases and degenerative conditions all require some form of therapy to maximize their functions, and this would add more to the need for professional physical therapists.

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