Physical Therapy : Career Outlook and Global Demand

The medical and health sciences field extends far beyond just doctors and nurses. Equally involved are physical therapists who, despite their lack of public exposure, go through training that is just as rigorous as other clinicians. And while a job title is incorporated in the name of the course of study, graduates of physical therapy courses can be more than just physical therapists.

Physical Therapy Career Options

A career as a physical therapist is the most obvious course of action after graduation, but it’s not as straightforward as it sounds. One could go into employment in a hospital or a clinic, or one could also establish one’s own practice as a private, independent clinician. The former gives lower wages that are guaranteed every month, while the latter can be more lucrative, but only if a consistent number of patients regularly come in to consult.

Teaching jobs in physical therapy is also seen as a growing employment market in the country as demand for physical therapists abroad increases and the population tries to satisfy it. Even small schools tend to offer reasonable salaries, but big universities are a lot more prestigious on the resume.

If you won’t be going on to study medicine, there are a wide range of jobs for physical therapy grads. Among them are caretakers for the elderly and persons with disabilities (PWD), as well as various technician posts in clinics and hospitals. Caretakers and techs, however, are always paid less than practicing clinicians. Private and personal physical trainers round out the mix of alternative career options for physical therapy graduates.

Where to Go for Wages

Locally, a practice – public or private – would be the best option salary-wise for recent graduates. The lowest end of the local pay scale would be a clinician in a public hospital which would give around PhP10,000 to PhP12,000 a month, while private practice is the other end with a typical income of PhP40,000 up per month for a well-known practice.

Other clinical jobs in the country such as medical technicians or caretakers have varying income. Starting wages range from about PhP9,000 at public facilities and hospitals to about Php20,000 at prestigious private clinics. Small private clinics such as the ones you would find in shopping malls give wages that are somewhere in the middle of the range.

Abroad, however, the demand as well as the pay is high. There’s still a small number of accredited physical therapists, especially in public facilities, and people are scrambling to fill the deficit. The most common annual rate for practicing physical therapists is around $70,000, about twice the national mean in the United States. That’s despite the fact that a good number work in public hospitals and facilities.

Like the case with nurses, foreign authorities are finding that they have great need for physical therapists as everything from technicians to rehabilitative therapists. The local workforce has that ideal combination of cheaper wage requirements and a high standard of training, which is why there are many opportunities for physical therapists abroad.

The United States is the most popular option, partly because many of the local recruiters operate with American partners. Other countries, however, are similarly as welcoming to physical therapists. Canada and England are just two of the places where jobs for Filipino physical therapy graduates are in good, steady supply.

Source: Academic Clinic

 

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