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Summary Report for:
31-2022.00 - Physical Therapist Aides

Under close supervision of a physical therapist or physical therapy assistant, perform only delegated, selected, or routine tasks in specific situations. These duties include preparing the patient and the treatment area.

Sample of reported job titles: Clinical Rehabilitation Aide, Physical Therapist Aide (PTA), Physical Therapist Technician (Physical Therapy Tech), Physical Therapy Aide (PTA), Physical Therapy Attendant, Physical Therapy Technician, Rehabilitation Aide, Rehabilitation Attendant, Restorative Aide (RA), Restorative Care Technician

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Detailed Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Clean and organize work area and disinfect equipment after treatment. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Instruct, motivate, safeguard, or assist patients practicing exercises or functional activities, under direction of medical staff. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Record treatment given and equipment used. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Administer active or passive manual therapeutic exercises, therapeutic massage, or heat, light, sound, water, or electrical modality treatments, such as ultrasound. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Transport patients to and from treatment areas, using wheelchairs or providing standing support. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Change linens, such as bed sheets and pillow cases. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Secure patients into or onto therapy equipment. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Schedule patient appointments with physical therapists and coordinate therapists' schedules. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Observe patients during treatment to compile and evaluate data on patients' responses and progress and report to physical therapist. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Confer with physical therapy staff or others to discuss and evaluate patient information for planning, modifying, or coordinating treatment. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Arrange treatment supplies to keep them in order. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Perform clerical duties, such as taking inventory, ordering supplies, answering telephone, taking messages, or filling out forms. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Maintain equipment or furniture to keep it in good working condition, including performing the assembly or disassembly of equipment or accessories. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Assist patients to dress, undress, or put on and remove supportive devices, such as braces, splints, or slings. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Measure patient's range-of-joint motion, body parts, or vital signs to determine effects of treatments or for patient evaluations. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Administer traction to relieve neck or back pain, using intermittent or static traction equipment. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Train patients to use orthopedic braces, prostheses, or supportive devices. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Fit patients for orthopedic braces, prostheses, or supportive devices, adjusting fit as needed. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Participate in patient care tasks, such as assisting with passing food trays, feeding residents, or bathing residents on bed rest. See more occupations related to this task.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

  • Blood pressure cuff kits — Blood pressure cuffs See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Canes or cane accessories — Canes See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Clinical hydraulic lifts or accessories — Hydraulic lifts See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Crutches or crutch accessories — Crutches See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Electronic blood pressure units See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Gait belts for rehabilitation or therapy — Gait belts See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Lower extremity prosthetic devices See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Notebook computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Orthotics or foot care products — Orthotic devices See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Parallel bars for rehabilitation or therapy — Parallel bars See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Personal computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Therapeutic heating or cooling pads or compresses or packs — Cold packs; Hot packs See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Upper extremity prosthetic devices See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Vascular or compression apparel or support — Anti-embolism elastic stockings See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Walkers or rollators — Walkers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Wheelchairs See more occupations related to this tool.

Technology used in this occupation:

  • Calendar and scheduling software — Scheduling software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Medical software — Patient record maintenance software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Office suite software — Microsoft Office software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Word processing software — Microsoft Word See more occupations related to this technology.

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Knowledge

  • Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Therapy and Counseling — Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Medicine and Dentistry — Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Psychology — Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Clerical — Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology. See more occupations related to this knowledge.

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Skills

  • 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. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Instructing — Teaching others how to do something. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents. See more occupations related to this skill.

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Abilities

  • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing. See more occupations related to this ability.

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Work Activities

  • Assisting and Caring for Others — Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others — Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Detailed Work Activities

  • Monitor patient progress or responses to treatments. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Perform clerical work in medical settings. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Prepare medical instruments or equipment for use. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Clean medical equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Maintain medical records. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Maintain medical equipment or instruments. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Hold patients to ensure proper positioning or safety. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Clean patient rooms or patient treatment rooms. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Assess physical conditions of patients to aid in diagnosis or treatment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Encourage patients during therapeutic activities. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Engage patients in exercises or activities. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Administer basic health care or medical treatments. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Assist patients with daily activities. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Administer therapy treatments to patients using hands or physical treatment aids. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Teach medical procedures or medical equipment use to patients. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Move patients to or from treatment areas. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Confer with other professionals to plan patient care. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Inventory medical supplies or equipment. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Schedule patient procedures or appointments. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Fit patients for assistive devices. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Work Context

  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 98% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Contact With Others — 92% responded “Constant contact with others.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Physical Proximity — 84% responded “Very close (near touching).” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Work With Work Group or Team — 68% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Exposed to Disease or Infections — 65% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Telephone — 57% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 85% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Standing — 36% responded “More than half the time.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 42% responded “Some freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 56% responded “Very important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 42% responded “Some freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Walking and Running — 38% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 52% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 34% responded “Very high responsibility.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Coordinate or Lead Others — 41% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Frequency of Decision Making — 40% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Consequence of Error — 31% responded “Extremely serious.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — 49% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Bending or Twisting the Body — 29% responded “More than half the time.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Electronic Mail — 49% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 27% responded “Important results.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 36% responded “High responsibility.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 38% responded “More than half the time.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 38% responded “Never.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Deal With External Customers — 31% responded “Important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Frequency of Conflict Situations — 42% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.” See more occupations related to this work context.

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed
Education These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
Related Experience Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.
Job Training Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
Job Zone Examples These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, salespersons (retail), and tellers.
SVP Range (4.0 to < 6.0)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
42   High school diploma or equivalent Help
22   Associate's degree
15   Some college, no degree

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Credentials

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Interests

Interest code: SR

  • Social — Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others. See more occupations related to this interest.
  • Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others. See more occupations related to this interest.

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Work Styles

  • Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems. See more occupations related to this work style.

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Work Values

  • Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement. See more occupations related to this work value.

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Related Occupations

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2014) $11.85 hourly, $24,650 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 50,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Much faster than average (22% or higher) Much faster than average (22% or higher)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 31,200
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

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