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Physical Therapist

Posted on in Careers

General Summary
An exempt position responsible for rehabilitating persons with physical disabilities. Patients include accident victims and individuals with disabling conditions such as back pain, arthritis, and fractures. May specialize in orthopedics and sports medicine.

Essential Job Responsibilities
1. Helps to restore physical function, improve mobility, relieve pain and prevent permanent disability. Assists in restoring, maintaining, and promoting overall fitness and health.
2. Examines patients’ medical histories. Tests and measures patients’ strength, range of motion, balance and coordination, posture, muscle performance, respiration, and motor function.
3. Determines patients’ ability to be independent and reintegrate into the workplace or community after injury or illness.
4. Develops plans describing a treatment strategy, its purposes, and its anticipated outcome. Plan often includes exercise regimens at the clinic and at home to increase flexibility, strength, or endurance. May use the electrical stimulation, hot packs, cold compresses and ultrasound to relive pain and reduce swelling.
5. Teaches patients how to use assistive and adaptive devices such as crutches, prosthesis, and wheelchairs.
6. Documents patients’ progress, conducts periodic examinations, and modifies treatments with emphasis on identification of areas requiring more/ less attention.
Education Bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from an accredited program; successful competition of clinical internship. Master’s degree in physical therapy preferred.

Experience
Minimum two years of experience as a physical therapist, preferably in a clinic setting. Current state physical therapist license. Current CPR certificate.

Performance Requirements Knowledge
1. Knowledge of basic science including biology, chemistry, and physics as well as biomechanics, neuroanatomy, and disease manifestations.
2. Knowledge of medical practice policies/ procedures, regulations, safety/ injection control, and quality assurance requirements.
3. Knowledge of examination techniques and therapeutic procedures.

Abilities
1. Ability to effectively communicate interpersonally in order to educate patients about their physical therapy treatments.
2. Ability to demonstrate compassion and desire to help patients.
3. Ability to analyze data and modify treatment plans as appropriate.

Skills
1. Skill in appropriate evaluation and treatment of patients including hands-on procedures such as deep-tissue massage.
2. Skill in using physical therapy equipment by consistently using devices appropriately to improve patient health status.
3. Skill in effectively maintaining equipment; successful completion of related competency testing.

Equipment Operated
Often demonstrates and helps patients use assistive and adaptive devices such as wheelchairs, walkers, crutches, and canes. Operates physical therapy equipment such as ultrasound, traction, and electrical stimulation.

Work environment
Medical office, exam rooms, and specially equipped therapy facilities. Exposure to communicable diseases, toxic substances and biohazards.

Mental/Physical Requirements
Often have to stoop, kneel, crouch, lift, and stand for long periods. Frequently move heavy equipment, lift patients or help them turn, stand or walk. Occasionally must be able to lift and carry 50+ pounds. Periodic stress from workload or anxious patients.

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