What Is The Difference Between A Pta And Occupational Therapist Assistant
Physical therapist assistants work under the direction of a physical therapist to help people return to daily activity which may encompass movement related recreational pursuits, work, or sports. PTAs also offer patients injury prevention strategies related to fitness and movement. They help implement plans established by a PT to promote movement, reduce pain, restore function and prevent disability.
Occupational therapy assistants work under the direction of an occupational therapist to help people of all ages who have a disability, condition or injury which interferes with their ability to carry out daily self-care, school or work tasks. OT/OTAs work on cognition as well as the physical aspect of care.
Average PTA salary by state
|Job / Career|
All salary data courtesy of the Bureau of Labor Statistics .
* Salaries can vary based on location, education, and experience. This average is not entry level recent graduates will need to earn experience and work their way up to earn a higher salary.
Both OTAs and PTAs may be able to increase their earning potential by earning a bachelor’s degree in health science. Completing a bachelor’s degree can help OTAs and PTAs qualify for more jobs within their field and advance their career.
Learn more about the primary difference between OTA and PTA.
Watch Out For Student Loans
Before becoming a PTA, be careful not to overspend on the degree. Some private PTA programs charge upwards of $60,000 a year in tuition! Truth be told, you probably cannot afford a private university program that leaves you with six figures in student loans. Graduating with over $100,000 in debt for an Associates degree that earns $55,000 a year does not make sense financially for most people.
A good rule of thumb is to avoid borrowingmore than one years worth of the average salary for your profession.
While this may be difficult to accomplish due to the rising costs of programs across the country, it is still possible. My advice is to seek out public PTA programs and minimize costs while attending PTA school.
How Much Do Physical Therapist Assistants Make In Jacksonville Fl
- Physical therapy assistants in Jacksonville make an average salary of $58,540.
- The average hourly wage for PTAs in Jacksonville is $28.14.
- For people in the 90th percentile, PTA salaries can reach as high as $81,570 or more.
- Jacksonvilles Cost of Living Index : 142
- The cost of living in Jacksonville is 14% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
Based on its affordability, the adjusted average salary for physical therapy assistants in Jacksonville rises to $66,891.
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How Much Do Physical Therapist Assistants Make In Nashville Tn
- Physical therapy assistants in Nashville make an average salary of $59,390.
- The average hourly wage for PTAs in Nashville is $28.55.
- For people in the 90th percentile, PTA salaries can reach as high as $78,610 or more.
- Nashvilles Cost of Living Index : 153
- The cost of living in Nashville is 8% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
Based on cost of living, the adjusted average salary for physical therapy assistants in Nashville rises to $63,918.
There are hundreds of other cities waiting to be discovered, and opportunities for hard-working physical therapist assistants exist in nearly all of them. Check out Provo Colleges accelerated healthcare programs today to find out more about how the right degree can open doors to an exciting new future.
How Much Do Physical Therapist Assistants Make In Cleveland Oh
- Physical therapy assistants in Cleveland make an average salary of $62,560.
- The average hourly wage for PTAs in Cleveland is $30.08.
- For people in the 90th percentile, PTA salaries can reach as high as $78,630 or more.
- Clevelands Cost of Living Index : 160
- The cost of living in Cleveland is 9% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
Based on its affordability, the adjusted average salary for physical therapy assistants in Cleveland rises to $68,463.
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Types Of Physical Therapist Assistant Job Settings
This is the most common setting and what most people think of when referring to a PT clinic. In outpatient care, PTAs help treat patients for musculoskeletal, neurological, or other movement-related impairments.
When admitted to a hospital, a patient may see a PT or PTA for short-term rehab in order to address functional deficits due to illness, surgery, or other medical issues. Hospital-based PTAs enjoy working with a variety of patients, helping them progress so that they can be discharged home or to a different facility.
Sub Acute Rehab
After their hospital stay, a patient may be admitted to a Sub Acute Rehabilitation facility for physical therapy treatment. In these settings, PTAs help the patient improve functional mobility so they can return home or to a long-term facility like a nursing home or SNF.
Nursing Homes/Skilled Nursing Facilities
Usually this kind of facility is for admitted, long-term patients of the nursing home however, it can also serve as an intermediary facility for patients who dont have a place to go after a hospital stay. In this setting, PTs and PTAs often work with an interdisciplinary team to help admitted patients achieve their rehab goals.
Home Health Agencies
PTAs often work in schools to help children with developmental delay or students who need assistance with movement impairments.
Fitness or Training Centers
How To Compare Salaries For Physical Therapist Assistants
Anyone whos traveled in the United States knows that a dollar goes further in some places than others. The same is true for annual salariesa lower salary* may stretch twice as far in one city than a higher salary* in another.
To help current or aspiring physical therapist assistants better compare average salaries, below is a list of the 20 best paying cities according to adjusted average salary.
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Discover Your Program In Minutes
Have you considered becoming a physical therapist but been daunted by the years of schooling? What if you could take a two-year associate program and begin working after that?
Becoming a physical therapist assistant involves a much cheaper and shorter educational journey than physical therapists themselves. You’ll also receive an average physical therapist assistant salary of $59,440 per year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics . A physical therapist will supervise your work, but you’d also be guiding patients through exercises yourself.
How Much Does It Cost To Become A Physical Therapist Assistant
While aides are often hired with only a high school diploma, you’ll need an associate degree from an accredited college or vocational school to become a physical therapist assistant. You can find these programs through the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education.
The costs will vary, but the average local two-year school costs $3,770 a year. The national exam costs $485 currently, so plan for this expense as well. Keep in mind that keeping your license in your state may have additional requirements, such as continuing education coursework.
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What Is The Average Physical Therapy Assistant Salary
Physical therapy assistants’ salaries vary based on location and industry. The top 10% of physical therapy assistants and aides earned more than $80,170 in May 2021, according to the BLS. Home healthcare services and nursing care facilities paid the most lucrative salaries.
PTAs working in medical offices earned much less. Doctors’ offices paid $58,190, while speech therapists, physical therapists, audiologists, and occupational therapists paid PTAs $59,720 during the same period.
Prospective physical therapy assistants should also consider location when researching salaries.
Physical Therapy Assistant Pay Faq In Michigan
The average salary for a Physical Therapy Assistant is $64,649 per year in Michigan. Salaries estimates are based on 240 salaries submitted anonymously to Glassdoor by a Physical Therapy Assistant employees in Michigan.
The highest salary for a Physical Therapy Assistant in Michigan is $94,990 per year.
The lowest salary for a Physical Therapy Assistant in Michigan is $44,000 per year.
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Annual Salaries For Ptas In Michigans Major Metropolitan And Non
Just as the average salaries of physical therapist assistants in Michigan differed depending upon experience in 2014, another key factor was location of employment. Since salaries often correspond to the demand for PT services in a given area, PTAs often earn more in the less populated rural areas that have become notorious for being medically underserved.
For example, PTAs who worked in the greater metropolitan area of Detroit-Livonia-Deerborn earned an average annual salary of $49,270 . Surpassing Detroits average was Flint, where the average salary was $51,190 . The city of Jackson, located just 35 miles south of the capital city of Lansing, paid its physical therapist assistants a competitive average salary of $53,730, annually .
For a more detailed analysis of PTA salaries in various metropolitan and non-metropolitan areas in Michigan, see the data provided below :
How Much Do Physical Therapist Assistants Make In The United States
Physical therapists work with both assistants and aides. The average salary for aides is just over $30,000, but they do not need an associate degree to work. On the other hand, the physical therapist assistant salary is substantially higher.
One of the benefits of working as an aide is that you can begin earning money to pay for your physical therapist assistant associate degree and gain valuable experience at the same time.
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How To Become A Physical Therapist In Michigan
The practice of Physical Therapy in Michigan was revolutionized in 2014 with the passage of legislation allowing consumers to directly access these services without a doctors prescription. SB 690 takes effect on January 1, 2015.
This change affects a large number of PT professionals. Michigan had the fourth highest concentration of Physical Therapy Assistant jobs in the country in 2013 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. They reported that 3,350 such professionals practiced in Michigan that year earning an average annual salary of $44,420. Nearly 29% of Michigans Physical Therapy Assistants were employed in the Warren-Troy-Farmington Hills area.
Nonmetropolitan areas in Michigan can also be good locations to work as a Physical Therapy Assistant. The nonmetropolitan area in the Balance of Lower Peninsula had the third highest employment level of any such area in the country. This area also had the highest employment level of nonmetropolitan areas in the U.S. for Physical Therapists.
In 2013, 7,830 Physical Therapists practiced in Michigan and earned an annual average salary of $80,820. Two Michigan cities were among the top cities in the country for the concentration of Physical Therapist jobs. Jackson was second, while the Saginaw area was third.
Physical Therapy Assistant:
Step 1: Complete Your Physical Therapy Degree
Physical Therapy Assistant
- Baker College of Allen Park
- Baker College of Flint
- Wayne State University
How Much Do Physical Therapist Assistants Make In San Bernardino Ca
- Physical therapy assistants in San Bernardino make an average salary of $70,210.
- The average hourly wage for PTAs in San Bernardino is $33.75.
- For people in the 90th percentile, PTA salaries can reach as high as $87,470 or more.
- San Bernardinos Cost of Living Index : 149
- The cost of living in San Bernardino is 10% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
Based on cost of living, the adjusted average salary for physical therapy assistants in San Bernardino rises to $77,259.
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Physical Therapist Assistant Salary In Michigan
How much does a Physical Therapist Assistant make in Michigan? The average Physical Therapist Assistant salary in Michigan is $63,324 as of September 26, 2022, but the range typically falls between $57,733 and $69,412. Salary ranges can vary widely depending on the city and many other important factors, including education, certifications, additional skills, the number of years you have spent in your profession.
- Adjust Physical Therapist Assistant Salary:
How Much Do Physical Therapist Assistants Make In Austin Tx
- Physical therapy assistants in Austin make an average salary of $65,460.
- The average hourly wage for PTAs in Austin is $31.47.
- For people in the 90th percentile, PTA salaries can reach as high as $93,660 or more.
- Austins Cost of Living Index : 159
- The cost of living in Austin is 4% cheaper than the average of all the cities in our study.
Based on cost of living, the adjusted average salary for physical therapy assistants in Austin rises to $68,080.
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What Are Top 5 Best Paying Related Entry Level Physical Therapy Assistant Jobs In Michigan
We found at least 5 jobs related to the Entry Level Physical Therapy Assistant job category that pay more per year than a typical Entry Level Physical Therapy Assistant salary in Michigan. Top examples of these roles include: Therapy Travel, Registered Physical Therapist, and Physical Therapist Consultant.
Importantly, all of these jobs are paid between $44,130 and $81,202 more than the average Entry Level Physical Therapy Assistant salary of $41,511. If youre qualified, getting hired for one of these related Entry Level Physical Therapy Assistant jobs may help you make more money than that of the average Entry Level Physical Therapy Assistant position.
Physical Therapy Assistant Salary In Michigan
How much does a Physical Therapy Assistant make in Michigan? The average Physical Therapy Assistant salary in Michigan is $62,901 as of September 26, 2022, but the range typically falls between $57,301 and $68,901. Salary ranges can vary widely depending on the city and many other important factors, including education, certifications, additional skills, the number of years you have spent in your profession.
|10th Percentile Physical Therapy Assistant Salary||$52,202|
|25th Percentile Physical Therapy Assistant Salary||$57,301|
|50th Percentile Physical Therapy Assistant Salary||$62,901|
|75th Percentile Physical Therapy Assistant Salary||$68,901|
|90th Percentile Physical Therapy Assistant Salary||$74,364|
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What Do Physical Therapist Assistants Do
Physical therapy assistants provide physical therapy services while being directed and supervised by a licensed physical therapist. PTAs may assist patients of all ages who need physical rehab or have medical issues or health-related conditions that limit their ability to perform daily activities.
PTAs provide care focusing on patients mobility, strength, and coordination and may help patients with exercises geared toward strengthening these abilities. PTAs may train patients for activities such as walking with a mobility device including crutches, canes, or walkers. They may also fit or adjust supportive devices, such a leg braces or crutches. In addition, PTAs are also trained to conduct therapeutic exercises and provide therapeutic massage using ultrasound or electrical stimulation for treatment.
Working with physical therapists, PTAs can help measure changes in patients performance and assist with clerical duties, including documenting progress, completing forms, and ordering supplies.
PTAs work in a variety of settings including hospitals, outpatient clinics, nursing homes, sports facilities, schools, and more.
Read more about what physical therapist assistants do.
Is It Worth It To Be A Physical Therapy Assistant
Physical therapy assistant jobs can be rewarding. Workers provide care to those in need while earning an average salary higher than the national average salary across all occupations. According to the BLS, physical therapy assistants earned an average of $60,740 in May 2021.
An associate degree, which includes clinical training and a state license, is required to work in the field. Specialists and those with specific certifications may have more earning potential.
The field is also growing. The BLS projects that 23,800 physical therapist assistant and aide jobs will open annually, on average, through 2030.
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Duties Of A Physical Therapist Assistant
There are several duties of a physical therapist assistant. Some of them are:
- The foremost and the primary duty of a PTA is to assist the Physical Therapist.
- They help the Physical Therapists by identifying the patients issues, recommending the options, assisting with the therapy, et cetera.
- They maintain that records of patients.
- Giving out instructions and encouraging a healthy lifestyle.
- Preparing patient management plans and handing out instructions.
- Keeping updated about the publications and reading material about advancements in the field.
- Sometimes PTAs also do the clerical duties, like picking up the phone, writing formal letters, filling out forms, taking down messages, et cetera.
- Observing patients as they carry out the exercises instructed by the Physical Therapist.
- Maintaining progress reports of the patients.
Physical Therapist Assistant Salary: By Source
Estimates of PTA salaries range depending on the source of the data. To come up with a trusted estimate, I averaged the results of multiple databases, all within 7% of the average salary of $55,761.
Below are those database averages:
Based on their 2016-17 PTA profile survey, the average salary for Physical Therapist Assistants is $52,000 a year or $25 per hour.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics places the median wage of a PTA at $59,440 or $28.58 an hour. The stats page also references a $28,450 salary for a PT aide, which is not the same as a PTA.
Actual PTA job listings on Glassdoor show hourly salaries between $25/hr and $30/hr. Taken together, GlassDoors average salary estimate is $56,797 among PTAs in Healthcare industries.
With nearly 6,000 respondents, PayScale presents an average hourly rate of $22.99 for an entry-level PTA and $27.04 for a PTA with more than 5 years of experience. The overall average is $26.16/hour, or $54,412 annually.
Compiled using data from actual Physical Therapist Assistants in the US, LinkedIns average wage is $27.00/hr. This amounts to $56,160 per year for a PTAs average salary.
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