Being a Physical Therapy Assistant (PTA) is an incredible career in a fast-growing field. In fact, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, PTA jobs are some of the fastest-growing in the nation—averaging 26% annually.
Basic PTA Job Information
Breaking down the salary for a PTA isn’t an easy prospect. A lot can depend on your experience.
In May 2018, the median annual wage for a Physical Therapist Assistant was $58,040. And while location had a large influence on salary, so did the industry. The top-paying industry for PTA jobs is in nursing care facilities. There, you can expect to make, $64,030 on average. The lowest paying industry is in a physician’s office, where you’ll earn $52,210.
Knowing this, where should you look for a job?
The Best States for PTA Jobs
There are many things that go into determining the best state to practice physical therapy. It depends on what is most important to you.
For some people, salary is most important while others are most concerned with future job prospects. Others look for PTA jobs based on unique factors like progressive practices which fully endorse using physical therapy apps for patients for rehabilitation.
To help you out, we’ve broken down some of the main characteristics of each state when it comes to PTA jobs:
- Employment rate
- Job availability
- Average salary
- Job projections
PTA Jobs: Employment Rate
Sometimes, you’re not concerned about finding the best traveling PTA companies or the highest salary.
You just want to live where the most jobs are.
If that’s the case, then take a look at the following five states for PTA jobs.
- Texas – 6,780 employees
- Ohio – 6,210 employees
- Florida – 5,340 employees
- California – 5,040 employees
- Illinois – 4,860 employees
Each of these states has the greatest number of jobs available. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t consider finding PTA jobs in other ones. There may still be the right fit for you, outside of areas with a high concentration of positions.
PTA Jobs: Availability by State
Now, what if you have a spouse or friend who is also looking for a PTA job? In that case, the concentration of PTA jobs to be a better indicator of your likelihood for success in finding work as a Physical Therapy Assistant.
In this case, the state order is:
- Ohio – 1.16 per thousand jobs
- West Virginia– 1.14 per thousand jobs
- Alabama – .99 per thousand jobs
- Kentucky – 0.95 per thousand jobs
- Tennessee – 0.94 per thousand jobs
Job concentration can also be key for PTA travel careers. Since these states have the highest concentration of PTA jobs, they might not need a traveling PTA as much.
Another thing to consider when it comes to job concentration is salary. It tends to be that the higher the concentration of PTA jobs, the greater the competition, thus the lower the PTA salary. Even when considering a traveling Physical Therapist Assistant salary, concentration can decrease your wages.
PTA Jobs: Average Salary
So, where should you work if salary is your biggest PTA job consideration?
These are the highest paying states for PTA jobs:
- Texas – Annual mean wage: $71,780
- New Jersey– Annual mean wage: $64,230
- California – Annual mean wage: $63,680
- Florida – Annual mean wage: $62,730
- Connecticut – Annual mean wage: $61,530
In the less high paying states, we recommend earning a travel Physical Therapy Assistant salary instead. In this case, you’ll start off with a higher salary, which could be leveraged when settling down in one place.
Top 3 Best States for PTA Jobs
Based on all of the above data, we’ve narrowed down our list to the top three states for physical therapy jobs.
It pays the highest salary, has the greatest expected job growth, and currently employs the most PTAs.
It’s the third-highest paying state for PTAs, has the second-highest expected job growth, and the fourth-highest employment rate.
Coming in third, Florida offers the fourth-highest PTA salary, the third greatest job growth expectation, and the third-best employment rate.
However, it is important to note that there are several other factors that must be considered when finding the best location to work.
Know What’s Best for You
The possibilities for PTA jobs are endless! You could find yourself in Maine, New York, Colorado, California, Hawaii, or any of the other US states. The most important thing to remember is to do what’s best for you