Physical Therapist

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.

Job Outlook through 2028

Employment Current: 12,500
Employment Projected: 15,070
Percentage Change: 20.6%

Education/Training

Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).

Sample Job Titles

  • Chief Physical Therapist
  • Home Care Physical Therapist
  • Outpatient Physical Therapist
  • Pediatric Physical Therapist
  • Per Diem Physical Therapist
  • Physical Therapist (PT)
  • Physical Therapist, Director of Rehabilitation
  • Registered Physical Therapist (RPT)
  • Rehabilitation Services Director
  • Staff Physical Therapist (Staff PT)

Duties

  • Plan, prepare, or carry out individually designed programs of physical treatment to maintain, improve, or restore physical functioning, alleviate pain, or prevent physical dysfunction in patients.
  • Perform and document an initial exam, evaluating data to identify problems and determine a diagnosis prior to intervention.
  • Evaluate effects of treatment at various stages and adjust treatments to achieve maximum benefit.
  • Identify and document goals, anticipated progress, and plans for reevaluation.
  • Record prognosis, treatment, response, and progress in patient's chart or enter information into computer.

Skills

  • Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Average Wages in PA

Entry Level: $60,050
Average: $86,450
Experienced: $124,650