How much does a physical therapist make? Physical therapists (PTs) earn a good salary due to the extensive training and education needed for this profession. Physical therapists are healthcare professionals who must treat and diagnose people of all ages, most commonly patients with medical problems or other health-related conditions. Patient injuries and illnesses may limit the patient's ability to perform the required daily functions needed in life. Physical therapists create an individual plan for each patient, examining their illness or injury. Physical therapists create a series of treatments using techniques to help the patient improve their ability to reduce pain, move, prevent permanent disability, restore physical function and relieve pain after an injury or illness. Physical therapists work with patients in order to prevent loss of mobility from illness or injury before it occurs, developing specific exercises to improve the patient's quality of life.
Physical therapists may also incorporate massage to improve range of motion, coordination and increase strength. Physical therapists commonly use cold, heat, light, water and traction treatments to treat patients. Physical therapists must also help train patients who have lost limbs or the use of limbs to use prosthetic and othotic appliances.
The range of care provided by physical therapists includes injuries related to work and sports, sprains/strains and fractures, burns, amputations, back and neck injuries, arthritis, stroke, multiple sclerosis, and conditions such as spina bifida and cerebral palsy.
Physical therapists should have good decision making qualities and be at ease with people, since most physical therapists work directly with patients. Physical therapists deal with ill or disabled patients who are impatient with progress or experiencing pain while in therapy. Elderly and stroke patients require extra care and understanding due to possible limitations in speech, dementia and hearing loss.
Employment for physical therapists is expected to grow much faster than average, with good job opportunities available. The majority of physical therapists (60 percent) work in offices of health practitioners, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes or hospitals. Physical therapists must have a post-baccalaureate degree from an accredited physical therapist program. Physical therapists may advance in their profession by providing contract services, becoming self-employed, or opening a private practice, along with opportunities available in research and academia.
How much does a physical therapist make an hour?
A May 2009 Bureau of Labor Statistics report shows the median hourly wages for physical therapists is $36.64.
Industry And Hourly Wages
Offices of Other Health Practitioners $36.42
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals $36.07
Home Health Care Services $40.14
Nursing Care Facilities $37.97
Offices of Physicians $37.08
How much does a physical therapist make per year?
The median yearly salary for physical therapists according to a May 2008 Bureau of Labor Statistics report is $72,790.
Home health care services $77,630
Nursing care facilities $76,680
General medical and surgical hospitals $73,270
Offices of physicians $72,790
Offices of other health practitioners $71,400