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Florida OT Electrical Stimulation Devices

Use of an electrical stimulation device for which a prescription is required by Federal law, 21 C.F.R. §801.109, is expressly prohibited except by an occupational therapist or an occupational therapy assistant who has received training below.


An “electrical stimulation device” is any device for which a prescription is required which employs transcutaneous electric current (direct, alternating, or pulsatile) for therapeutic purposes.

Required Training

The training required for students, postgraduates, and licensees to qualify for the use of an electrical stimulation device shall include didactic training of at least four (4) hours and performance of at least five (5) treatments under supervision.

The required training may be obtained through educational programs, workshops, or seminars offered at a college or university approved for training of occupational therapists by the American Occupational Therapy Association or of physical therapists by the American Physical Therapy Association or at clinical facilities affiliated with such accredited colleges or universities or through educational programs offered by the American Society of Hand Therapists or Florida Occupational Therapy Association. Online courses are not approved for the didactic or performance training.

Supervised Treatment Sessions

Supervised treatment sessions shall be conducted under the personal supervision of licensed occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants who have completed four hours of coursework in the use of electrical stimulation devices and five (5) supervised treatments or licensed physical therapists and physical therapist assistants trained in the use of electrical stimulation devices.

Treatment supervisors must have a minimum of 24 months prior experience in the use of electrical stimulation devices.

Personal supervision means that the supervisor is in the room with the trainees and actively provides guidance and supervision of the performance treatments.

Training Program Standards

The training provided which teaches the therapeutic uses of electrical stimulation devices shall provide for the following minimum competency level:


    • The expected outcome of treatments with Therapeutic Electrical Current (hereinafter T.E.C.) must be consistent with the goals of treatment.
    • Treatment with T.E.C. must be safe, administered to the correct area, and be of proper dosage.
    • Treatment with T.E.C. must be adequately documented.

Current Duration and Mode:

    • Ability to determine the duration and mode of current appropriate to the patient’s neurophysiological status while understanding Ohm’s Law of electricity, physical laws related to the passage of current through various media, as well as impedance.
    • Ability to describe normal electrophysiology of nerve and muscle; understanding generation of bioelectrical signals in nerve and muscle; recruitment of motor units in normal muscle and in response to a variety of external stimuli.
    • Ability to describe normal and abnormal tissue responses to external electrical stimuli while understanding the differing responses to varieties of current duration, frequency and intensity of stimulation.

Selection of Method and Equipment:

    • Ability to identify equipment with the capability of producing the preselected duration and mode.
    • Ability to describe characteristics of electrotherapeutic equipment and understanding the therapeutic value of different electrotherapeutic equipment.
    • Ability to describe safety regulations governing the use of electrotherapeutic equipment.
    • Ability to describe principles of electrical currents.
    • Ability to describe requirements/idiosyncrasies of body areas and pathological conditions with respect to electrotherapeutic treatment.

Preparation of Treatment:

    • Ability to prepare the patient for treatment through positioning and adequate instructions.

Treatment Administration:

    • Ability to correctly operate equipment and appropriately adjust the intensity and current while understanding rate of stimulation, identification of motor points, and physiological effects desired.
    • Ability to adjust the intensity and rate to achieve the optimal response, based on the pertinent evaluative data.

Documentation of Treatments:

    • Ability to document treatment including immediate and long-term effects of therapeutic electrical current.

Proof of Training

Any occupational therapist or occupational therapy assistant who uses such electrical stimulation device shall, upon request of the Board, or the Department, present proof that he or she has obtained the training required by this rule.


Fla. Admin. Code § 64B11-4.001

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