Since the demand for Physical Therapy Assistants is high and expected to grow much faster than most other occupations for the foreseeable future, salaries have been very stable and are growing as well.
There are about 70,000 licensed Physical Therapist Assistants (PTA) in the USA and increasing demand is expected to create another 25,000 PTA jobs over the next few years. This means that job openings are likely going to be available in every state, so you may not have to move very far (if at all) to find work and a good PTA salary.
Physical Therapy Assistant Salary
According to payscale.com, the average Physical Therapy Assistant salary in the USA ranges from about $32,000 to $64,000 with about 10% making more or less than that salary range. This works out to about $16 – $30 per hour. The median annual salary (midway point) is about $45,000.
These income numbers reflect pay scale differences between lower cost of living and higher cost of living cities or states, as well as the number of years of experience working as a PTA.
Physical therapist assistant salaries can also vary greatly depending on whether you’re working in a hospital, private practice clinic or lower paying venues such as is often the case with public schools.
You can potentially increase your salary by taking additional courses that help further your skills in specialized areas of physical therapy. You could develop your expertise in treating specific demographics, such as children or the elderly, or you could focus on specific parts of the body, such as hips or back.
Another important factor in determining your physical therapy assistant salary is whether your employer offers profit sharing, which some do. This can sometimes account for up to one-third of your total salary. When employers do offer profit sharing, these amounts typically range from a few hundred dollars to $20,000+ per year.
Make sure you discuss profit sharing with each prospective employer and factor in any estimates you get from them before making a final decision on any job offers. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to talk to other employees within those companies to find out how much profit sharing has averaged over the last few years (employers may give a rosier picture than is actually factual).
When considering physical therapy assistant salary offers, also look at the benefits package that comes with the job. Depending on your needs, it can definitely be worth taking a lower salary if the health or other benefits add up in your favor.
Things like the number of paid days off, health insurance coverage and deductibles, dental and eye care benefits, and retirement plan programs can make a big difference in the overall value of the job offer and should be considered part of your physical therapy assistant salary evaluation.
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