Physical Therapist Schools | Get Your Physical Therapy Degree – Tombstone AZ

How to Choose a Physical Therapist Training Program near Tombstone 85638

Tombstone AZ physical therapy school student with volunteerEarning a physical therapy degree near Tombstone AZ is an essential first step to starting a rewarding career in the health care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help people who have been disabled as a result of injury or illness gain back mobility and function. But before they may legally practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to receive the proper education and training. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, many mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited school. So before enrolling in a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate those you are considering to ensure they will supply a superior education and meet your state’s licensing standards. What you do not want to do is choose a school just because it happens to be the closest to your residence or it has cheapest tuition. There are other important qualifications that need to be considered along with cost and location. 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 is a Physical Therapist’s Job Description?

Tombstone AZ physical therapist helping patient walkPhysical therapists practice in diverse settings, including Tombstone AZ private practices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for the diagnosis and rehabilitation treatment of patients. As earlier touched on, physical therapists help patients that are struggling with a lack of mobility and in many cases pain caused by injury or illness. After patient diagnosis, they develop a course of treatment to resolve the mobility problems and reduce or eliminate any pain. They also endeavor to prevent any progression of the disability. Though the causes of disability necessitating physical therapy are abundant, they include:

  • Osteoporosis and Arthritis
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Strokes.
  • Heart attacks.
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Burn injuries.
  • Knee Replacement.
  • Fibromyalgia.
  • Cerebral Palsy.

Licensed physical therapists practice in close association with other Tombstone AZ health specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, registered nurses and dentists. They may also oversee one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to bear in mind for anyone considering entering the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists often lift patients and heavy equipment, and stand, crouch and kneel for long periods of time on a daily basis.

Physical Therapist Degrees

Tombstone AZ physical therapist applying acupuncture to patientThere are 3 physical therapist degrees offered for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the single degree that is offered to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to progress to the doctoral level. Following are brief descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Tombstone AZ area:

  • Associate Degrees train students to practice as physical therapy assistants, or can be the first step toward earning a more advanced degree. Applicants must have earned a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are most often provided by community or junior colleges, and require two years to complete. An internship or other form of clinical training is normally part of the program.
  • Bachelor’s Degrees are designed as pre-physical therapy education to ready students to move up to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential first step to practicing as a PT. As with the majority of bachelor’s degrees, they normally take four years to finish and usually include an internship program of a minimum of 500 hours.
  • Doctorate Degrees are a requirement in order to become a practicing licensed physical therapist. The degree program also must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). In addition to the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes three years to finish, making the total commitment 7 years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an important component in addition to the considerable classroom and lab instruction. Consequently the fulfillment of an internship is mandated, not solely for graduation but in a number of states for licensing as well.

The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has replaced the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been eliminated and is no longer available in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists having a master’s or even a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the present licensing mandate for a doctorate was instituted.

Physical Therapy Colleges Online

woman attending physical therapy school online in Tombstone AZWhile not as prevalent as the more traditional options, there are some accredited online physical therapy programs offered, more so at the graduate level. Because of the hands-on structure of the training, internships and clinical lab work are integrated with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or in proximity of an available internship. However, the online portion of the program may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Tombstone AZ home. Online schools are not only to some extent more accessible, but in a number of instances more affordable. Tuition can be somewhat less than similar on campus alternatives, and expenditures for commuting are minimized. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, assuring a quality education. These advantages can make the online option the right choice for those students that are disciplined enough to learn at home.

Topics to Ask Physical Therapist Schools

At this point you most likely have made a decision regarding some of your preliminary queries, such as the kind of physical therapy degree you want to earn, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much money you can afford to invest in your education. But because there are so many PT colleges within the Tombstone AZ area and throughout Arizona, you’ll have to research additional qualifications also so as to further narrow your list of college options. Moreover, you want to make certain that you select the program that is best for you. That’s why we have put together a list of critical questions that you must ask the physical therapy schools you are considering. Ask each of the potential colleges these questions before making an ultimate decision.

Is the Physical Therapist Program Accredited?  Ask if the programs you are reviewing have earned accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As previously stated, if you are pursuing a doctorate the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you enroll in an online school, it may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s essential that both the physical therapy school and program you select are accredited, not simply the school. Additionally, verify that the accreditation is from a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Along with ensuring that you receive an excellent education, accreditation might be mandated for state licensing and even for securing student loans or financial aid.

What is the College’s Reputation? In addition to accreditation, it’s important that the college and program you select have exceptional reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can investigate a PT college’s reputation, starting with requesting references from employers that they place their graduates with. You can also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Contact a few Tombstone AZ physical therapy centers or other health care facilities that you might be interested in working for and ask if they can offer any recommendations about your college options. It may also be prudent to contact the Arizona Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the colleges.

What is the School’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a two significant statistics that you need to know about all of the physical therapy colleges you are considering. First is their graduation rate. A low rate might indicate that students left due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. Once the students have graduated, how many of them are being hired with the support of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Tombstone AZ area? If a program has a high job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the health care field is good or perhaps excellent. It also affirms that the school has a wide network of contacts to assist students gain internships or employment upon graduation.

Does the Program Prepare You For Licensing Requirements? It’s imperative that the school you enroll in provides both excellent training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working. In each state a passing score is needed on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) in addition to a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. Although licensing requirements differ state by state for PT and PTA graduates, many states require a minimum amount of clinical hours be performed and passing scores on supplemental exams.

Are Internship Programs Sponsored? Inquire if the physical therapy schools you are reviewing have associations with Tombstone AZ hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific way to receive practical experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a secondary benefit, they may help students and graduates establish professional connections in the Tombstone healthcare community and assist with job placement once licensed.

What are the Class Sizes ? Unless you are the sort of student that likes to sit far in the rear of class or get lost in the crowd, you will probably want a small class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are researching what the average teacher to student ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may want to sit in on one or more classes before making your ultimate decision. This will also give you a chance to talk with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the pharmacist tech program as well.

Where is the Program Located? For a number of students, the physical therapy school they decide on will have to be within travelling distance of their Tombstone AZ residence. Those who have chosen to attend classes online naturally will not have to concern themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a college that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges commonly charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.

Is Financial Aid Offered? Most DPT schools offer some form of financial aid to their potential students. Inquire if the colleges you are reviewing have a financial assistance department and find out what kind of aid is offered. They at least should help in securing a student loan or any grants you may qualify for. Some physical therapist schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a school because the tuition is too expensive, learn what financial assistance may be available.

Can the College Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapy college you finally select can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially important if you choose to continue working while attending classes. If you must schedule evening or weekend classes in the Tombstone AZ area, make sure 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 enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you might miss because of work, illness or family emergencies.

Earning Your Physical Therapy Degree near Tombstone Arizona?

If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Tombstone AZ area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.

Tombstone, Arizona

Tombstone is a historic city in Cochise County, Arizona, United States, founded in 1879 by prospector Ed Schieffelin in what was then Pima County, Arizona Territory. It became one of the last boomtowns in the American frontier. The town grew significantly into the mid-1880s as the local mines produced $40 to $85 million in silver bullion, the largest productive silver district in Arizona. Its population grew from 100 to around 14,000 in less than seven years. It is best known as the site of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral and presently draws most of its revenue from tourism.

The town was established on a mesa above the Goodenough Mine. Within two years of its founding, although far distant from any other metropolitan area, Tombstone had a bowling alley, four churches, an ice house, a school, two banks, three newspapers, and an ice cream parlor, alongside 110 saloons, 14 gambling halls, and numerous dance halls and brothels. All of these businesses were situated among and on top of a large number of silver mines. The gentlemen and ladies of Tombstone attended operas presented by visiting acting troupes at the Schieffelin Hall opera house, while the miners and cowboys saw shows at the Bird Cage Theatre and brothel.

Under the surface were tensions that grew into deadly conflict. The mining capitalists and the townspeople were largely Republicans from the Northern states. Many of the ranchers (some of whom—like the Clantons—were also rustlers or other criminal varieties) were Confederate sympathizers and Democrats. The booming city was only 30 miles (48 km) from the U.S.–Mexico border and was an open market for cattle stolen from ranches in Sonora, Mexico, by a loosely organized band of outlaws known as The Cowboys. The Earp brothers—Wyatt, Virgil and Morgan—as well as Doc Holliday, arrived in December 1879 and mid-1880. The Earps had ongoing conflicts with Cowboys Ike and Billy Clanton, Frank and Tom McLaury, and Billy Claiborne. The Cowboys repeatedly threatened the Earps over many months until the conflict escalated into a shootout on October 26, 1881. The historic gunfight is often portrayed as occurring at the O.K. Corral, though it actually occurred a short distance away in an empty lot on Fremont Street.

Enroll in the Best Physical Therapist College near Tombstone AZ

Selecting the best physical therapist program is an important first decision you have to make to begin a gratifying career in the healthcare field. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have exceptional reputations and be accredited. But there are additional critical questions that you should ask pertaining to your college of choice as well. As you start your search for a physical therapist college, bear in mind that numerous variables will guide you toward your final decision. You might want to visit different schools to view their facilities and talk with active DPT students. While there, ask yourself this important question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a licensed practicing physical therapist? By adhering to our list of additional questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the best choice. And with the proper education and training, you can fulfill your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Tombstone AZ.

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