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Georgia PT Principles of Conduct for Physical Therapy Assistants

Act with consideration, within the scope of physical therapy, for the rights and dignity of all individuals.

    • The physical therapist assistant shall hold as confidential information obtained while functioning as a physical therapist assistant.
    • The physical therapist assistant shall provide optimal physical therapy care for all patients delegated by the physical therapist regardless of patient race, gender, age, religion, disability or sexual preference.
    • The physical therapist assistant should be aware of the patient's physical, psychological and socioeconomic welfare in decisions and actions taken while rendering treatment.
    • The physical therapist assistant shall communicate and interact with patients and all persons encountered with courteous regard and timeliness.
    • The physical therapist assistant shall not engage in any behavior that constitutes harassment or abuse of a patient, professional colleague or associate.

Comply with the laws and regulations governing the practice of physical therapy in the State of Georgia.

    • Physical therapist assistants are to practice only under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist.

Accept responsibility for the exercise of sound judgement.

    • Upon accepting delegation from a physical therapist, the physical therapist assistant shall provide services within the plan of care established by the physical therapist.
    • When the individual's needs are beyond the scope of the physical therapist assistant's expertise, the physical therapist assistant shall inform the supervising physical therapist.
    • When the physical therapist assistant determines that a change in the plan of care is needed, the assistant will contact the supervising physical therapist and request reevaluation of the patient's status.
    • When the physical therapist assistant determines that the patient has received maximum benefits from physical therapy, he/she shall so inform the supervising physical therapist.
    • Physical therapist assistants are not to delegate to a less qualified person any activity which requires the unique skills, knowledge, and judgement of a physical therapist assistant.
    • The primary responsibility for physical therapy care assisted by supportive personnel rests with the supervising physical therapist. Adequate supervision is the responsibility of both the physical therapist and the physical therapist assistant. To insure appropriate supervision, the physical therapist assistant is expected to:
      • Maintain effective channels of written and oral communication.
      • Communicate critical information about the patient to the supervising physical therapist in a timely manner.
      • Function within the established plan of care.
      • Identify and document treatment activities and all special occurrences.
      • Request re-evaluation of the patient and/or modification of the plan of care when necessary.
    • Physical therapist assistants are obligated to advise their employer(s) of any practice which causes a physical therapist or a physical therapist assistant to be in conflict with the ethical principles of this section. Physical therapist assistants are to attempt to rectify any aspect(s) of their employment which is in conflict with the principles of this section.

Seek remuneration for their services that is deserved and reasonable.

  • Physical therapist assistants shall not:
    • Directly or indirectly request, receive, or participate in the dividing, transferring, assigning, or rebating of an unearned fee;
    • Profit by means of a credit or other valuable consideration, such as an unearned commission, discount, or gratuity in connection with furnishing of physical therapy services;
    • Use influence upon individuals, or families of individuals under their care for utilization of any product or service based upon the direct or indirect financial interest of the physical therapist assistant;

Provide accurate information to the consumer about the profession and the services provided.

    •  Physical therapist assistants are not to use, or participate in the use of, any form of communication containing false, plagiarized, fraudulent, misleading, deceptive, or unfair statements.

Accept the responsibility to protect the public and the profession from unethical, incompetent, or illegal acts.

    • Physical therapist assistants shall report any activity which appears to be unethical, incompetent, or illegal to the proper authorities.
    • Physical therapist assistants shall not participate in any arrangement in which patients are exploited due to the referring sources enhancing their personal incomes as a result of referring, prescribing, or recommending physical therapy or a specific physical therapy practice.
    • If a physical therapist assistant is involved in an arrangement with a referring source in which income is derived from the services, the physical therapist assistant has an obligation to disclose to the patient, within the scope of the State Law, the nature of the income.

Reference

Ga. Comp. R. & Regs. R. 490-9-.03

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