Physical Therapy Assistant
at Volunteers of America

Date Posted: 6/20/2019

Job Description

PRIMARY RELATIONSHIPS: Nursing staff, Social Services, Associate Therapies, and family members. Coordinates with members of other departments and staff in Physical Therapy Department.

OBJECTIVE: To provide physical therapies and education. The Physical Therapy Assistant assists the Physical Therapist with resident/patient related activities and direct resident/patient care. The Assistant keeps department records as per facility policy.

QUALIFICATIONS: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • A graduate from a physical therapist assistant curriculum approved by the American Physical Therapy Association and is currently licensed as a Physical Therapist Assistant in the state (if license is available).
  • Minimum of one year experience as a physical therapist assistant in a skilled nursing facility is preferred.
  • Able to understand medical terminology and how it applies to physical therapy, to communicate with residents, staff and physicians, and how to prepare meaningful reports.
  • Spatial and form perception are necessary to visualize anatomical structure of the disabled part of the body and the relation of the therapeutic devices in remedial actions.
  • Coordination and dexterity are necessary when treating residents and handling therapeutic equipment.
  • Ability to communicate with the residents to establish favorable attitude to motivate the resident to desired cooperation and effort in his/her rehabilitation development
  • Possesses adequate strength and endurance to meet the physical demands involved in moving residents and equipment into position for treatment and in manipulating equipment and residents.
  • Be willing to work Saturdays, to travel to other Volunteers of America Care Centers, and to work flexible hours.
  • Ability to utilize computers and other electronic devices for tasks such as timekeeping, in-servicing and documentation.
  • Skill and knowledge regarding Cardiac Rehabilitation therapy a plus.
  • Skill and knowledge regarding PPS a plus.
  • Able to meet the requirements identified in the Essential Functions.


ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Perform physical therapy treatments and related duties as may be delegated by the physical therapist.
    • Respond promptly to acute changes in the patient’s physiological state and to report and record pertinent changes.
    • Modify treatment techniques in conference with the registered physical therapist.
    • Teach patients, resident’s families and other health care providers to perform selected treatment procedures and functional activities.
    • Directly assist the physical therapist in performing complex evaluations and/or treatment procedures.
  • Maintain proper documentation according to state, federal and third party payor regulations.
  • Maintain proper records according to facility policy and procedures.
  • Perform and record, as specified by the planned treatment program, non-evaluative on going data.
    • Measurements of vital signs, range of motion, strength and linear increments.
    • Types of assistive mobility devices used and the distances covered.
    • Results of tests and evaluations performed by the registered physical therapist.
  • Respond to psych-social support needs of the patient and/or the resident’s family.
  • Communicate appropriately and effectively with all personnel and to document according to professional standards.
  • Keep timely records, meet regularly with the Registered Physical Therapist and attend care conferences as requested.
  • Participate in patient care conferences and other rehabilitation related meetings as appropriate.
  • Communicate with supervisor and other health care team members regarding patient progress, problems and plans.
  • Participate in the MDS process as a member of the interdisciplinary team.
  • Participate in the PPS team process monitoring minutes of therapy and understanding the PPS systems.
  • Participate in in-service training programs for all staff in the facility.
  • Instruct resident/patient and family members and nursing staff in restorative and maintenance programs.
  • Abides by regulations pertaining to the facility as established by Federal and State Agencies and the Volunteers of America Health Facilities policies.
  • Attends required in-services & completes assigned on-line modules.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Cautionary Note:

The Physical Therapy Assistant does not perform any of the following activities:

  • Evaluation of residents.
  • Determination of resident's treatment program.
  • Receive or interpret physician's orders.
  • Modify or change physical therapy treatments.
  • Terminate treatments without direction of the Registered Physical Therapist.
  • Report resident's progress to physician.

Job Requirements

Work Environment

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee may encounter while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individual with disabilities to perform the essential functions:

  • Interacts with staff, consultants and outside vendors.
  • May be subjected to interruptions throughout the workday.
  • Exposure to blood, body tissue of fluids.
  • Exposure to hazardous waste materials, dust and loud or unpleasant noises.

Physical Demands

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individual with disabilities to meet these demands:

  • Employee needs ability to move continuously; may cover large distances walking through facility and is on feet consistently.
  • Vision requirements include both near and far vision.
  • Frequently required bend, squat, stoop, twist, reach, crouch, knell, push and pull; occasionally required to climb, crawl, and balance.
  • Frequent sitting or standing.
  • Frequent repetitive pushing, pulling, grasping and find manipulation.
  • Frequent resident handling.
  • Occasional lifting from floor.
  • Employee is required to frequently carry up to twenty-five (25) lbs. and to carry up to seventy-five (75) lbs.; frequently required to lift up to one hundred (100) lbs., and occasionally lift up to seventy-five (75) lbs.
  • At times may be required to drive automotive equipment.
  • Ability to adapt to changes in daily work hours and schedule.
  • Ability to hear normal sounds within background noise.
  • Ability to speak clearly and make self understood.
  • Ability to keep attention on task if routinely interrupted.
  • Ability to understand a variety of concepts/approaches.
  • Ability to remember tasks/assignments for a full shift.
  • Ability to work beyond regularly scheduled shift (overtime) when necessary.

Safe Work Performance Expectations

The safety of employees, residents and visitors is of paramount importance to Volunteers of America. Our work place safety program will be incorporated as the standard of practice for this organization. Compliance with these safe work expectations will be required of all employees as a condition of employment. Our organization focus will hold all employees accountable for safety performance equal with quality and production expectations.

Employees will be expected to:

  • Follow correct policy and procedures for department and facility Fire/Disaster/Missing Person Plan. Know the location of fire alarms and extinguishers.
  • Follow correct policy and procedure for hand washing.
  • Follow guidelines for proper method of lifting.
  • All doorways, hallways and areas are to be kept clear.
  • Know the location and purpose of Safety Data Sheets (SDS).
  • Follow guidelines for department environment and safety measures.
  • Follow guidelines for safe handling, inspection, maintenance and storage of equipment. Report any malfunction of equipment.
  • Follow guidelines for safe handling and storage of chemicals and supplies.
  • Follow correct policy and procedure for reporting of incidents: staff, residents, etc.

 EOE M/F/Vets/Disabled

Job Snapshot

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The national office is located in Alexandria, Va., part of the greater Washington, DC area. The headquarters includes executive staff and major office departments that have national responsibilities and provide support to local offices and Volunteers of America housing and senior living and care communities: communications, fundraising; public policy, finance, chartering, housing, volunteer services, program services and other operations.

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