The physical therapy industry has seen a dramatic uptick in enrollment in recent years.
According to the latest data from the National Association of Therapeutic Examiners (NTAE), the number of physical therapists working in the U.S. doubled in 2017 to reach 2.4 million.
The number of certified physical therapists increased from 690,000 in 2016 to 1.4 billion in 2017, according to NTAE.
And that’s not all.
The industry’s average gross annual revenue grew by nearly $300 million in 2017 from $924 million in 2016, according the American Board of Physical Therapy (ABPT).
The biggest growth comes from specialty training, which accounts for about a third of the industry’s revenue.
ABPT’s 2018 National Directory of Certified Physical Therapists (NCCT) reports the industry has more than 10,000 certified physical therapy professionals across the country.
And the numbers are still growing.
According the NCCT, the average age of physical therapy certification candidates is now 37.
And by 2020, physical therapists will likely outnumber their fellow physicians, dentists, and podiatrists combined.
What to expect in the next few years physical therapy graduates are already looking for work.
According a 2017 report from the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (AAMR) that examined the growth of physical therapist employment, there’s a glut of jobs available for those with a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy and the physical therapist specialty.
The shortage of physical-therapy jobs is largely attributed to the fact that physical therapists are no longer required to complete residency training in a specialty.
They can instead pursue a certificate in physical medicine or allied health, or a certificate that doesn’t require any degree.
The AAMR said that more than a third (34.3 percent) of physical service providers who responded to the survey said they were seeking additional positions in the industry.
to the AAMS, more than 9.7 million people in the United States were physically trained as physical therapists in 2017.
And while a shortage of employment is certainly an issue, the job market has also seen an increase in the demand for physical therapists.
In 2017, physical therapy was the most popular specialty in the top 10 occupations for employers, according a survey from CareerBuilder.
In 2018, physical service positions accounted for 12.9 percent of all jobs in the 10 most popular professions.
That number is projected to rise to 16.4 percent by 2020.
In addition to a shortage, many physical therapists have noticed the rising demand in their field.
In 2019, more jobs in physical therapist training were available for students than ever before.
In the next four years, physical therapist jobs will likely grow in number by nearly 200,000, according CareerBuilder, which said that demand will likely reach 1.5 million by 2020 and double by 2023.
“There’s a lot of opportunity in physical health and physical therapy for young professionals and those looking to enter the field,” said AAMP president, Dr. Andrew McQuaid.
“I think it’s a really exciting time for physical therapy in the coming years.”
In 2017 alone, physical medicine, dentistry, and orthopedics combined had over 3.5 billion dollars in total annual revenues.
“A large part of that growth is driven by our workforce,” said NTAEs CEO, Dr of Physical Therapeutics, Dr Richard M. McDaniel.
“It’s an incredible opportunity to work in a place that’s going to be able to meet the needs of a growing population of patients,” said Dr. McQuades.
In 2020, more physical therapists graduated than ever, with about 3,200 graduates per 1,000 physical therapy practitioners.
And it’s expected that the number will increase to 4,500 by 2021.
The growth of demand in the physical therapy field has also been driven by new technologies.
The demand for health information technology, or HEIT, is expected to grow by about 5.8 percent per year by 2020 to $16.7 billion, according research firm McKinsey & Company.
“We are now seeing new technologies being used by physical therapists to meet growing demand in a number of areas, including diagnostics, diagnosis, and monitoring,” said McKinsey’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr Jody Williams.
“This trend has the potential to improve physical therapy by making it accessible to everyone, without any barrier to entry,” said Williams.
A lot of these technologies have been in the works for years, but have only recently become available to the public.
These technologies include virtual reality, where therapists can practice their craft with a virtual reality headset or a 360 degree camera.
“Virtual reality technology has been around for years,” said McQuade.
“But, it’s only now getting into the public consciousness that the use of this technology is widespread and widely accepted.”
In 2020 alone, the number in the public health field that was certified in virtual reality was about 7,000.
“The trend is really