Just the Assistant
Because I am a PTA do people look at me as "only an assistant" to the REAL therapist?
I have asked myself that question and have been told by patients and family members, "Oh, you're the assistant, can I talk to the therapist?" So, like everyone else who wanted to better themselves I went back to school.
My resume is quite impressive. Lots of jobs in different settings, plenty of experience, publications, CEUs, certificates and, of course, several degrees.
I have been told if I do not like being a PTA I should go back to school to become a PT. Sounds like a great idea until I took a look at tuition costs for me to become a PT. I would be better off becoming a nurse. So I went to nursing school. It didn't work out the way I planned and it took me away from my family too much so I abandoned that after a year. (I was taught great assessment skills though.)
Then I got to talking to some other PTAs who would consider the option to become a PT if the courses were made more available to them. Most of us had 10 plus years in the field and were fairly adept at our skills and confident in our knowledge that we could become PTs if we wouldn't have to take A and P, chemistry, biology, etc., all over again. Apparently some schools "expire" the courses on the transcripts if they are more than 5 years old. Does human anatomy and the basic chemical make up of living organisms change that rapidly?
What a PTA with 10 plus years of experience would need is primarily evaluation and assessment skills. Yeah, we could throw in a couple of review courses (keep them condensed and brief) then get on with the clinical part of the program. I think a one-year intense clinical training program for a PTA with 10 years in the field would be a good transitional program. How many of us with that many years in the field would actually do it if it was a year program?