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Provides physical therapy to children and young adults disabled through disease or injury, in accordance with prescriptions issued by a physician. Provides therapy either within the school for the orthopedically impaired, as an itinerant therapist, in schools with special classes for the multiple handicapped, licensed private facilities, or the residences of homebound students. Confers with parents, staff, and community and medical agencies to affect a comprehensive treatment program.
- Implements the therapeutic prescriptions issued by a physician.
- Directs and aides students in active and passive exercises, muscle re-education, and gait and functional training.
- Utilizes physical agents such as water, heat, light, and massage during the treatment process; employs mats, parallel bars, steps, Hubbard Tanks, infrared heat lamp and various other therapeutic modalities and equipment to facilitate physical and functional abilities.
- Utilizes exercise that involves the application of neurophysiologic theories and techniques.
- Instructs and assists students, parents, and school staff in the care and use of equipment including wheelchairs, braces, canes, crutches, and prosthetic devises.
- Evaluates equipment, checking for proper fit and maintenance.
- Adapts, designs or suggests special equipment as necessary and as the result of medical consultations.
- Evaluates, tests, and treats students orthopedically and multiple handicapped who have been referred by various sources including clinics, orthopedic consultants, and private physicians.
- Plans appropriate treatment programs, coordinating therapeutic services with activities in the classroom and in the home.
- Trains and retrains students through standard therapeutic procedures observing and recording their mental and physical responses.
- Adjusts length, frequency, and intensity of treatments to needs of the individual pupil.
- Consults with teachers, parents, paraprofessional’s community agencies, and others appropriately concerned.
- Alerts school staff to necessary procedures, special precautions, and safety measures applicable to individual pupils and the student population as a whole.
- Encourages parents to have pupils utilize skills acquired in therapy.
- Demonstrates exercises, positioning and other procedures to be used in the home; as an itinerant therapist, visits students who are homebound or residing in licensed private facilities for the purposes of providing therapy.
- Complies and maintains reports indicating status of individual pupils undergoing treatment, kinds of therapy administered and results obtained.
- Completes and submits timely and all required ACCESS billing reimbursement information.
- Performs related work as required.
- Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in physical therapy.
- Any combination of training which includes the completion of a bachelor’s degree program and which meet the requirements of the Pennsylvania State Board of Physical Therapy.
- Possession of a valid license to practice as a Physical Therapist as issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
- Demonstrated knowledge of:
- The principles, practices, methods, materials, and techniques used in physical therapy.
- The possible hazard to patients during treatment and of the necessary precautionary and remedial measures and techniques.
- Community organizations and facilities, especially those involved in services for the handicapped.
- The psychological and educational processes involved in the treatment of the severely and profoundly mentally retarded and the physically and orthopedically handicapped.
- Understand, interpret, and implement the oral and written instructions of a physician.
- Select, apply, and adapt materials and methods appropriate for the therapeutic treatment of physically challenged children and young adults.
- Gain the confidence and cooperation of pupils while rendering therapeutic services and instruct them, their parents, teachers, and staff in understanding and dealing with disabilities and health problems.
- Communicate effectively, both orally and in writing.
- Prepare and maintain thorough and comprehensive records and reports.
- Establish and maintain effective working relationships.
The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified.