Physical therapy jobs are hard to fill, and the openings will increase significantly above the national average. As a physical therapist, you have more choices than ever before. With this amount of opportunity, deciding your best career fit might seem overwhelming. Relax. Here are six approaches to advance your career as a physical therapist.
6 Options for Career Advancement When Working as a Physical Therapist
Physical therapy managers oversee staff and day-to-day operations in private clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, and schools. Advancing into management requires some degree of interpersonal skill. Managers train and direct staff, provide technical direction and interact with patients daily. If management interests you, expect to work during regular working hours. However, there will be times when night or weekend work is required. Most organizations expect you to be licensed in your state and have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy.
Additionally, this position entails being responsible for the financial side of operations, particularly in private clinics. As such, expect to implement financial strategies, forecast and anticipate requirements, monitor variances and analyze financial reports.
Rehabilitation Services Director
As a rehabilitation services director, you will create plans that cover a wide range of therapies. These therapies consist of physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and counseling, and you will oversee the therapists who are administering these services. You might also provide clearances for patients to return home. Therefore, you will need extensive experience in the therapeutic field and knowledge of management techniques.
Branch Out As a Therapist
Advancing your physical therapy career is an excellent idea, so is branching out into other practice areas. There is a wide variety of practice settings for therapists who seek variety, including:
- Long-term care facilities
- Assisted living
- Research centers
- Home health care
Certified Hand Specialist
Perhaps specialization is for you. For example, becoming a certified hand specialist might interest you. You will do work that focuses on the hand, wrist, and shoulder area. Certification as a hand therapist will require three years of clinical experience as a physical or occupational therapist, 4,000 hours of hand therapy, and the passage of an examination.
Being an owner of a physical therapy business or clinic is fantastic for those therapists who want to be their boss. However, starting and owning your own physical therapy business is tremendously challenging. Do your research, talk to owners, and get multiple perspectives on ownership.
If you want to specialize and advance your career, consider becoming an orthopedic surgeon. Orthopedic surgeons diagnose conditions of the musculoskeletal system and then surgically address these conditions. Medical school attendance and a residency in orthopedics is a requirement. In addition, you may wish to specialize in a particular area of orthopedics like the hand or spine.
Ready To Advance Your Career? myPTsolutions Can Help!
The recruiters at myPTsolutions can help you advance your career and fulfill your career ambitions. Allow them to help you find a rewarding physical therapy opportunity.