How to Pick a Physical Therapy Training Program near Indio 92201
Earning a physical therapy degree near Indio CA is an essential first step to beginning a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been debilitated as a result of illness or injury gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and provide treatment for the rehabilitation of patients, they must acquire the appropriate training and education. A PT must additionally be licensed in all states, many requiring that the licensee hold a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So prior to enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s essential to investigate those you are looking at to make certain they will supply a quality education and satisfy your state’s licensing requirements. What you do not want to do is select a school simply because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has the lowest tuition. There are other relevant qualifications that need to be considered in addition to location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll address what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists work in varying locations, such as Indio CA hospitals, health clinics, assisted living facilities, rehab centers and sports facilities. What the facilities all share in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As previously stated, physical therapists help people that are suffering from a lack of mobility and often pain due to injury or illness. After diagnosing a patient, they develop a course of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also try to prevent any progression of the disability. While the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Cardiac arrest.
- Sports injuries.
- Burn injuries.
- Knee Replacement.
- Cerebral Palsy.
Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Indio CA health professionals, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They may also oversee several physical therapy assistants who work under them assisting with diagnosing and treating their patients. One thing to take note of for anyone thinking about going into the physical therapy field, it is quite physically demanding. Physical therapists regularly lift heavy equipment as well as patients, and kneel, crouch and stand for extended periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapy Degree Options
There are 3 physical therapy degrees available for students to pursue at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Of these choices, the one degree that is attainable to practice as a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees focus on either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Below are brief explanations of degree levels that are offered in the Indio CA area:
- Associate Degrees train students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The programs are usually made available by community or junior colleges, and take about two years for completion. An internship or other form of clinical training is typically a portion of the curriculum.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are developed as pre-physical therapist training to ready students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not a requirement to be a candidate for the doctoral program, they are an integral first step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they normally take 4 years to finish and commonly include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required in order to become a licensed practicing physical therapist. The degree program also must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to finish, making the overall investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an essential element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the completion of an internship is mandated, not just for graduation but in a number of states for licensing also.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer attainable in the USA. A number of practicing physical therapists holding a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in before the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.
Physical Therapist Online Colleges
Although not as common as the more traditional options, there are some accredited online physical therapist degrees offered, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This necessitates that the student live near the college campus or in proximity of an available internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the course of study may be accessed within the convenience and comfort of the student’s Indio CA residence. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of cases more economical. Tuition can be significantly less than comparable on campus alternatives, and expenses for commuting are minimized. And many of the online programs are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits can make the online option the right choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.
Questions to Ask Physical Therapy Colleges
By now you undoubtedly have made a decision concerning several of your initial queries, like the type of physical therapist degree you intend to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Indio CA area and across California, you’ll need to explore other qualifications as well so as to further reduce your list of school options. Furthermore, you need to be sure that you choose the program that is best for you. That’s why we have collected a list of important questions that you must ask the physical therapy schools you are reviewing. Ask each of the competing schools these questions before making an ultimate decision.
Is the Physical Therapy College Accredited? Find out if the programs you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a regional or a national organization. As previously mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctoral degree the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you enroll in an online school, it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s important that both the physical therapy program and school you choose are accredited, not just the school. Also, make sure that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Along with ensuring that you obtain an excellent education, accreditation might be required for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the College’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s imperative that the college and program you choose have outstanding reputations within the physical therapist profession. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT program’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You may also check online reviews and rating services and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with a few Indio CA physical therapist centers or other medical care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your school options. It might also be a good idea to check with the California Attorney General and school licensing authority to find out if any complaints have been filed against the schools.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? There are a couple of significant statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapist colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate may indicate that students left due to dissatisfaction with the program, the instructors, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Indio CA area? If a program has a high job placement rate, it suggests that its reputation within the healthcare community is good or even excellent. It also affirms that the program has a large network of contacts to help students gain internships or jobs after graduation.
Does the College Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s essential that the college you enroll in furnishes both exceptional training and a curriculum that satisfies the licensing criteria for California or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) as well as a degree from an accredited physical therapist college. Although licensing requirements fluctuate state by state for PTA and PT graduates, a number of states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed as well as passing scores on supplemental exams.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Ask if the physical therapy colleges you are reviewing have associations with Indio CA clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Not only are internships a terrific means to get practical training in a clinical setting, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they can assist students and graduates develop professional connections in the Indio healthcare community and help with obtaining employment once licensed.
What Size are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that likes to sit way in the rear of the classroom or get lost in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and personalized instruction. Ask the physical therapist colleges you are looking at what the typical teacher to student ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to converse with several of the students and instructors to get their opinions regarding the pharmacy technician program also.
Where is the College Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy college they pick will need to be within commuting distance of their Indio CA residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. Something to consider is that if you choose to enroll in a school that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you might be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges often charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges often charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Aid Offered? The majority of DPT colleges offer some form of financial support to their potential students. Find out if the colleges you are examining have a financial assistance department and find out what kind of assistance is available. At a minimum they should help in obtaining a student loan or any grants you might be eligible for. Some physical therapy schools offer scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial aid may be available.
Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the physical therapy program you finally select can provide the class schedule you need. This is particularly crucial if you decide to continue working while you attend classes. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Indio CA area, verify that they are available. If you can only attend part-time, find out if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to carry. Also, learn what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Indio California?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Indio CA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Indio is a city in Riverside County, California, United States, located in the Coachella Valley of Southern California's Colorado Desert region. It lies 23 miles (37 km) east of Palm Springs, 75 miles (121 km) east of Riverside, 127 miles (204 km) east of Los Angeles, and 148 miles (238 km) northeast of San Diego. It is about 98 miles (158 km) north of Mexicali. The word Indio is Spanish for Indian.
The population was 76,036 in the 2010 United States Census, up from 49,116 at the 2000 census, an increase of 55%. Indio was once referred to as "the Hub of the Valley", which was the Chamber of Commerce slogan in the 1970s—today the nickname is the "City of Festivals" because of cultural events held in the city, most notably Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.
Railroad line construction east out of Los Angeles began in 1873. Trains were operated to Colton on July 16, 1875, and to Indio (then Indian Wells) on May 29, 1876. Moving on eastward from Indio, the railroad reached the west bank of the Colorado River opposite Yuma on May 23, 1877 (a village known as Arizona City prior to 1873). There was delay in getting military authority to lay tracks across the Yuma Indian reservation, and it was September that year before the bridge was completed so trains could operate into Yuma. The Southern Pacific Railroad was to have joined those of the Texas & Pacific, one of several railroads then holding, or seeking, federal authority to build lines from various sections of the country west to the Pacific Coast. But the rail-head of the T & P was at a standstill far off in Texas, so Southern Pacific continued building eastward. (A Historical Sketch of the SOUTHERN PACIFIC 1869-1944 by Erle Heath Editor, The Southern Pacific "Bulletin", www.cprr.org/Museum/SP_1869-1944/).
Choose the Right Physical Therapy School near Indio CA
Deciding on the ideal physical therapy college is a necessary initial decision you must make to launch a rewarding career in the medical field. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have outstanding reputations and be accredited. However there are other critical questions that you need to ask regarding your school of choice as well. As you start your search for a physical therapy school, keep in mind that many factors will guide you to your final decision. You may decide to visit different campuses to view their facilities and talk to current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this college help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the options so you can make the ideal selection. And with the proper training and education, you can fulfill your dream to become a licensed physical therapist in Indio CA.
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