Could You be a Physiotherapy Assistant?
Are you passionate about helping people with their health? As a physiotherapy assistant, you’ll work alongside registered physiotherapists to support patients recovering from injury, illness or disability-related physical issues.
This hands-on job can be extremely rewarding, but it requires a high level of patience and compassion.
If you think you have what it takes, learn more about the role of a physiotherapy assistant and how you can pursue this career path with a physiotherapy assistant course from Foundation Education.
What does a physiotherapy assistant do?
Operating under the direction of a physio, physiotherapy assistants help patients follow specific exercise and treatment programs related to injury, illness or disability-related physical issues. Patients might be seeing a physiotherapist to treat pain, improve circulation, strengthen muscles, restore joint mobility, improve balance and coordination, or other reasons.
Physiotherapy assistants work with people of all ages in a range of settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, private practices, fitness and sports centres, workplaces and schools.
Responsibilities might include:
- Running tests to identify and assess physical problems of patients
- Designing treatment programs
- Setting up equipment
- Working on exercises with patients
- Showing patients how to use mobility aids, canes and artificial limbs
- Applying therapeutic techniques (e.g. heat, cold or massage therapies)
- Helping patients prepare for treatment (including helping with dressing and undressing)
- Instructing patients and their families in procedures to be continued at home.
Want to learn more? Read our article Role of a Physiotherapy Assistant.
How much do physiotherapy assistants make?
The salary of a physiotherapy assistant in Australia ranges between $45,000 to $61,000 per year or between $20 and $26 per hour (Payscale, 2019). As with most occupations, your salary may depend on factors such as qualifications, experience and location.
Top Traits of a Physiotherapy Assistant
Patience and Compassion
Often working closely with people with physical disabilities and patients in hospitals or clinics, physiotherapy assistants must possess qualities of care, compassion and patience. This role requires outstanding interpersonal skills and the ability to empathise with clients to ensure they feel comfortable in vulnerable situations.
Strong Communication Skills
One of the most important roles of a physiotherapy assistant is to understand a client’s injury or condition in order to create an appropriate treatment plan. Communication is key in this hands-on, client-centred career. Physiotherapy assistants are responsible for not only communicating possible diagnoses and exercise instructions to clients – they also need to liaise with clients’ family members and other health professionals throughout treatment.
Ability to Encourage and Motivate
While great physiotherapy assistants understand treatment takes patience and perseverance, they also know when it’s appropriate to give their patients a gentle nudge toward progress. Patients can be more likely to carry out their rehabilitation plan with some external encouragement and motivation, so it’s important to know how to be firm while respecting their limits.
Physiotherapy Assistant Course
To work as a qualified physiotherapy assistant in Australia, you must complete an accredited physio assistant course, such as a HLT33015 Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance.
A HLT33015 Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance course involves online theory and practical work placement, giving you real-world experience to prepare you for the fast-paced health care industry. This physiotherapy assistant qualification equips you with the knowledge and skills required to assist with allied health programming, interpret basic medical terminology and comply with infection prevention and control policies.
If you’re interested in becoming an allied health assistant focusing in physiotherapy, a HLT33015 Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance can teach you everything you need to work confidently in this area.
Learn more about a HLT33015 Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance with Foundation Education by calling our friendly and helpful team on 1300 616 197.