To prepare for Recognition of Advanced Proficiency, a PTA should:
- Determine which area of proficiency to pursue: acute care, aquatic, cardiovascular/pulmonary, education, geriatric, integumentary, musculoskeletal, neuromuscular, oncology, or pediatric.
- Select a work environment that is conducive to career development and includes a patient/client population in the selected area of proficiency. Keep records of your work hours and patient/client experiences.
- Seek a mentor in the clinical or educational environment. The supervising physical therapist is a great selection as this person, they can not only help guide your development in the proficiency area, he/she will be familiar with your newly acquired knowledge and skills and will be able to provide opportunities for using your new skills to benefit patients/clients or your students.
- Obtain the required minimum hours of continuing education and keep detailed records of your activities.
- Seek out and participate in volunteer opportunities and contribute to the physical therapy, local, or other communities. Take on leadership positions to develop new skills or refine previously obtained leadership skills.