Physical therapy is used to treat people of all ages, from newborns to the very oldest, who have medical problems or other health-related conditions that limit their abilities to move and perform activities in their daily lives. This month, it is National Physical Therapy Month. We would like to recognize all the health physical therapist’s provide for people that need it. Here is some information on what the physical therapy profession is all about:

Role of a Physical Therapist:

Physical therapists examine each individual and develop a plan using treatment techniques that will promote the ability to move, reduce pain, restore functions, and prevent disability. Also, physical therapists work with people to avoid the loss of mobility before it even occurs by developing fitness and wellness-oriented programs for more active and healthier lifestyles. They provide the care for people in a variety of different places including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, home health agencies, schools, sports and fitness facilities, work settings, and nursing homes. A state license is required in each state in which the physical therapist practices.

The Physical Therapy Job:

It is a dynamic profession with an established theoretical and scientific base. It uses a widespread of clinical practices in the restoration, maintenance, and promotion of physical function. They take on leadership roles within professional and community organizations that promote rehabilitation, prevention, health maintenance, fitness, and wellness. They also play a crucial role both in developing standards for physical therapist practice and in improving healthcare policies to ensure availability, accessibility, and optimal delivery of health care services. Physical therapy is covered by federal, state, and private insurance plans. As clinicians, physical therapists engage in an examination process that includes taking the patient/client history, conducting a systems review, and performing tests that measure to identify potential and existing problems.

Establishing Diagnoses:

To develop plans of care, prognoses, and diagnoses, physical therapists perform evaluations, synthesizing the examination of data, and determining whether the problems to be addressed are within the scope of physical therapy. Based on the physical therapists’ judgments and the patient goals, they provide interventions (the interactions and procedures used in managing and instructing patients), conduct re-examinations, modify interventions as necessary to achieve anticipated goals and expected outcomes, and develop and implement discharge plans.

Educational Requirements for becoming a Physical Therapist

They must receive a graduate degree from an accredited physical therapist program before taking the national licensure exam that allows them to practice. They have the most specialized education to help people restore and improve motion. Today, physical therapists are required to complete a graduate degree, either a masters or clinical doctorate from an accredited education program. A growing majority of programs offer the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree. Currently, 199 colleges and universities nationwide support 212 approved professional physical therapy education programs. Now, 96% offer the DPT.

Licensure Requirements for becoming a Physical Therapist

After graduation, candidates must pass a state-administered national exam. Other requirements for physical therapy practice vary from state to state. It depends on the state regulations governing physical therapy.

Employment Outlook for Physical Therapy

There is a high demand for physical therapists in the workforce. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for physical therapists is expected to grow by 36% between the years 2012-2022. It is much faster than the average for other occupations. The high demand depends on different states and area of practice, but the unemployment rates are low across the whole country. The need for physical therapy is expected to stay strong in the foreseeable feature as the U.S. population grows and ages, which leads the demand for physical therapy services to keep on growing.

At Gonzaba in San Antonio, our primary care services offer physical therapy. It is compromised by preventative and wellness care. We understand that physical therapy is vital in protecting health and preventing any health conditions that can affect motor functions. Visit our website or one of our locations to see how physical therapy can help you.