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Alabama Physical Therapy Aides

What is the definition of an aide?

A person trained under the direction of a physical therapist who performs designated and supervised routine tasks related to physical therapy services.

What are the roles and responsibilities of an aide?

The roles and responsibilities of physical therapy aides in physical therapy care are:

    • To perform assigned duties under the direct on-site supervision of the physical therapist or physical therapist assistant.
    • To prepare patients and area for physical therapy treatment.
    • To assist patients in dressing, removing clothing, and applying or removing assistive or supporting devices.
    • To support or stabilize patients to assist the physical therapist or physical therapist assistant
    • To transport patients.
    • To transfer or assist in transfer of patients when appropriate.
    • To perform housekeeping duties.
    • To perform clerical or reception duties when directed by the physical therapist.
    • To assist in performance of routine treatment procedures as delegated and directly supervised (onsite) by the physical therapist or physical therapist assistant:
      • The aide may only perform activities that do not require the clinical decision making of the physical therapist or physical therapist assistant.
      • An aide may perform restorative care on patients discharged from physical therapy.

What are the responsibilities of the PT or PTA when delegating to an aide?

The PT or PTA supervising the aide must reassess the patient at the beginning of each treatment session to determine what treatment procedures are appropriate for that treatment session.

If modality treatments are to be provided, the PT or PTA supervising the aide must designate the exact location to be treated, the length of treatment, and the parameters of the modality being used.

The aide may not perform any hands-on treatment, including, but not limited to, manual resistance exercise, passive range of motion, soft tissue mobilization or joint mobilization. This does not prohibit an aide from assisting licensed personnel in handling a patient when more than one person is needed.

If exercise is to be provided, the licensee supervising the aide must be in direct line of sight.

What type of supervision is required?

Direct on-site supervision

Required designation for aides

Non-licensed physical therapy support personnel shall be identified as physical therapy aide in a legible manner to individuals that come in contact with them while working under the supervision of a PT/PTA. Primary identification as a physical therapy aide may be followed by other license credentials or certifications. Proper identification includes, but is not limited to, embroidery, clip-ons, paper nametags, name badges, or other appropriate means.

Reference

Ala. Admin. Code r. 700-X-3-.05

Ala. Code ยง 34-24-191


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