We know that musculoskeletal health is key to employee wellness and performance and that onsite physical therapists (PTs) can help your employees obtain optimum health. But how do you know your onsite provider is up to the task? Have they received advanced workplace injury prevention and management training? What exactly is the training they need to be a PT? Are there certifications, licenses, and or degrees necessary?
Read on to learn what it takes to be a physical therapist, what training WorkWell’s onsite PTs take, and what is involved in being part of the WorkWell Provider Network.
What Do you Know About the Qualifications of your Onsite Provider?
WorkWell’s onsite providers are all credentialed PTs that have been extensively educated and trained on injury prevention and treatment. To practice as a physical therapist in the United States requires a considerable amount of commitment and education – typically seven years of higher education. A Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree is required from an educational institution accredited by theCommission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education. Professional DPT programs are usually a three-year undertaking. And that is after earning a bachelor’s degree and/or master’s degree, which is required for admission to most DPT programs. However, some programs offer a 3+3 program, where students follow a prescribed curriculum program that allows students to receive a bachelor’s degree in three years and then transition into a three-year professional DPT program.
Content areas in the curriculum for a DPT may include, biology, anatomy, cellular histology, physiology, exercise physiology, biomechanics, kinesiology, neuroscience, pharmacology, ethics/values, management sciences, finance, sociology, cardiovascular, pulmonary, endocrine, metabolic, and musculoskeletal.
Post-graduation, some licensed PTs decide to pursue a residence or fellowship program to further their knowledge.
Each state has its own rules and regulations for PTs to be licensed in their state. Individuals must pass the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE), which theFederation of State Boards of Physical Therapyadministers to receive a PT license.
After passing the exam, one needs to meet any additional requirements their state licensing board has before practicing, for instance, jurisprudence exams. Specific state regulatory boards manage licensure. Almost all states require continuing education to maintain licensure.
The Alphabet Soup of Physical Therapists’ Credentials
You may notice that PTs frequently have several letters after their name, which identifies earned educations or areas of specialty. At the doctoral level, you may see clinical doctoral of physical therapy (DPT), doctor of science (ScD or DSc), doctor of science in physical therapy (DScPT), doctor of physical therapy science (DPTSc), science doctor of physical therapy (ScDPT), and doctor of health science (DHSc or DHS).
Often you will note an MPT or MSPT, which is a master’s in physical therapy. Other initials represent PTs who complete master’s degrees in related areas such as master in health education (MHE), master in public health (MPH), master of business administration (MBA), master in public administration (MPA), and masters in health science (MHS or MHSc). Additionally, there are Orthopedic Certified Specialist (OCS), Pediatric Certified Specialist (PCS), Sports Certified Specialist (SCS), and Women’s Health Certified Specialist (WCS), among others.
These credentials are critical because when committing to a culture of safety, you want to ensure that the professionals implementing your workplace safety programs have the required education and training.
WorkWell’s Network of 10,000 Credentialed Physical and Occupational Therapists
WorkWell’s providers take their training to the next level. On top of their degrees, they undergo education aimed explicitly at workplace injury prevention and treatment to enhance their knowledge and skills for improving an employee’s musculoskeletal health. Your onsite provider’s education is essential, but the focused continuing education in workplace services and hire-to-retire musculoskeletal wellness is what sets WorkWell apart.
The WorkWell Provider Network also includes PT assistants, occupational therapists (OT), OT assistants, kinesiologists, and athletic trainers who continually upskill on workplace safety. While these clinicians typically are not responsible for managing onsite clinics, they are involved in workplace services such as post-offer employment testing, analysis and definition of functional job requirements and ergonomics.
For over 25 years, WorkWell has trained highly educated providers on our industry-leading workplace injury prevention and management methodologies. Providers are educated on workplace injury prevention techniques, including first aid/screening, early intervention for aches/pains, coaching, work conditioning, ergonomics, and worksite rounding. Treatment and intervention methods are taught for the early management of new injuries, care coordination, stay-at-work/return-to-work planning. Training also encompasses post-offer employment testing, analysis and definition of functional job requirements and reporting.
WorkWell has trained over 10,000 providers on how to deliver the highest quality workplace injury prevention and management services possible. Our network of providers undergoes the industry’s top-rated training programs, which include:
Proven best practices in occupational health
An integrated approach to worker/workplace evaluations and interventions
A consistent, standard method for testing, reporting, and marketing
Tools and templates that adapt to an employer’s needs