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Physiotherapy assistants and occupational therapy assistants

OaSIS code 32109.05

Physiotherapy assistants and occupational therapy assistants assist physiotherapists and/or occupational therapists in treating patients with injuries and physical disabilities.

Overview

Also known as

  • Occupational therapy assistant
  • Occupational therapy technician
  • Physical therapist assistant (PTA)

Main duties

This group performs some or all of the following duties:

  • Under the direction of physiotherapists and/or occupational therapists, carry out treatment programs such as thermotherapy, traction, hydrotherapy and electrotherapeutic techniques to rehabilitate patients with various injuries or disabilities to maximize their ability to independently manage daily activities.

Additional information

  • In most provinces occupational therapy assistants (OTA) and physiotherapy assistants (PTA) receive training through a single OTA/PTA program in community colleges.

Similar occupations classified elsewhere

Exclusions:

  • Physiotherapists (31202)
  • Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners and acupuncturists (32200)
  • Massage therapists (32201)
  • Other practitioners of natural healing (32209)
  • Licensed practical nurses (32101)
  • Paramedical occupations (32102)
  • Respiratory therapists, clinical perfusionists and cardiopulmonary technologists (32103)
  • Medical laboratory assistants and related technical occupations (33101)
  • Other assisting occupations in support of health services (33109)

NOC hierarchy breakdown

NOC version

NOC 2021 Version 1.0

Broad occupational category

3 – Health occupations

TEER

2 – Occupations usually require a college diploma or apprenticeship training of two or more years; or supervisory occupations

Major group

32 – Technical occupations in health

Sub-major group

321 – Technical occupations in health (except practitioners of natural healing)

Minor group

3210 – Technical occupations in therapy and assessment

Unit group

32109 – Other technical occupations in therapy and assessment

Occupational profile

32109.05 – Physiotherapy assistants and occupational therapy assistants

Work characteristics

Work characteristics gathers the various components describing the work environment of each occupation, such as employers, work activities, and the work context. Each category displays up to 10 descriptors in descending order based, firstly, on their attributed ratings by the level of complexity (for Work Activities) or other measurement dimensions (for Work Context), and secondly, in alphabetical order. The whole list of descriptors and their ratings can be expanded at the bottom of each page.

Work Activities

Proficiency or complexity level
Assisting and Caring for Others
5 - Highest Level
Clerical Activities
4 - High Level
Analyzing Data or Information
3 - Moderate Level
Applying New Knowledge
3 - Moderate Level
Communicating with Coworkers
3 - Moderate Level

Work Context

Structural Job Characteristics

Structured versus Unstructured Work
Degree of freedom to determine tasks and priorities
2 - Low amount of freedom
Work Week Duration
Worked hours in a typical week
2 - Between 35 to 40 hours

Physical Work Environment

Physical Proximity
Physical distance from others
5 - Physically touching or very close

Physical Demands

Sitting
Duration
2 - Less than half the time
Standing
Duration
4 - More than half the time
Bending or Twisting the Body
Duration
3 - About half the time

Interpersonal Relations

Contact with Others
Frequency
5 - Every day, almost continuously
Duration
5 - All the time, or almost all the time
Work with Work Group or Team
Importance
4 - Highly important
Frequency
4 - Every day, a few times per day

Workplaces/employers

  • Clinics
  • Educational institutions
  • Extended care facilities
  • Hospitals
  • Private practices of physiotherapists
  • Rehabilitation centres

Skills and abilities

This section displays the various competencies required for an occupation. Each category displays up to 10 descriptors in descending order based, firstly, on their attributed ratings by the level of proficiency (for Skills and Abilities) or importance (for Personal Attributes) and secondly, in alphabetical order. The whole list of descriptors and their ratings can be expanded at the bottom of each page.

Abilities

Proficiency or complexity level
Arm-Hand Steadiness
3 - Moderate Level
Body Flexibility
3 - Moderate Level
Dynamic Strength
3 - Moderate Level
Finger Dexterity
3 - Moderate Level
Fluency of Ideas
3 - Moderate Level

Skills

Proficiency or complexity level
Social Perceptiveness
4 - High Level
Coordinating
3 - Moderate Level
Evaluation
3 - Moderate Level
Instructing
3 - Moderate Level
Learning and Teaching Strategies
3 - Moderate Level

Personal Attributes

Importance
Adaptability
4 - Highly important
Analytical Thinking
4 - Highly important
Attention to Detail
4 - Highly important
Collaboration
4 - Highly important
Concern for Others
4 - Highly important