Physical Therapist

Physical therapist is a person legally qualified and licensed to practice physical therapy under Republic Act No. 5680.

Physiatrist is a legally qualified and licensed physician specializing in the practice of rehabilitation medicine.

Physical therapy technician is a person, who not having acquired a bachelor’s degree in Physical Therapy is qualified through in-service training and practical experience to assist in the application of physiotherapeutic procedures and to undertake specific assignments as directed by a qualified physical therapist in carrying out the prescription of a licensed physician. Such assignments shall be confined within the limits of a hospital or institution of employment.

Occupational therapist is a legally qualified person licensed to practice occupational therapy under Republic Act No. 5680 and who by accepted academic training and professional clinical experience possesses the knowledge and skills to achieve the objectives as defined and set by the occupational therapy profession. The occupational therapist functions through the use of the basic methods, approaches and procedures of occupational therapy (creative, manipulative, educational, pre-vocational evaluation and self-care activities) which are designed to assess and develop the actual and potential abilities of the individual. The occupational therapist plans, organizes, evaluates, and participates in a medically oriented treatment program to assist the disabled person towards physical independence, productivity, and constructive personal or social relationship. The occupational therapist functions in general and special hospitals, rehabilitation and welfare centers, pediatric clinics, psychiatric clinics, specialized schools, geriatric institutions, home care programs, and work-adjustments units.

Occupational therapy technician or assistant is a person who, not having acquired a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy, is qualified, as determined by a bona fide national professional association of occupational therapists in the Philippines through in-service training under practical experience, to function as an assistant to and under the direct supervision of an occupational therapist to assist in rehabilitating patients in hospitals and similar institutions.

Board refers to Professional Regulatory Board of Physical and Occupational Therapy in the Philippines.

Except as otherwise specifically allowed under the provision of Philippine Physical and Occupational Therapy Law, an examination for registration for the practice of physical therapy in the Philippines shall be given by the Board on the first Saturday of June and December of each year, and for the practice of occupational therapy one week thereafter, in Manila and other places, and dates as the PRC may designate subject to the compliance with the requirements prescribed by the Commission in accordance with PRC Modernization Act of 2000.

Applicants for physical therapist board exam, or the occupational therapist board exam, at the time of filing his or her application, shall establish to the satisfaction of the Board:
a. He is a citizen of the Philippines, or if a foreigner, must prove that the country of which he is a subject or citizen permits Filipino physical therapists and occupational therapists to practice within its territorial jurisdiction on the same basis as the subjects or citizens of such country.
b. He is least twenty-one years of age.
c. He is of good health and of good moral character.
d. He has finished a standard academic high school course or its equivalent in a school, college or university legally established or duly recognized by the government.
e. He has received a degree, if he is an applicant for the physical therapy examination, in Physical Therapy from a school of physical therapy duly recognized by the Philippine Government: Provided, That such educational institution offers at least the following academic subjects prior to the admission in the main physical therapy course, namely, English, Mathematics, Speech, Political Science, Social Science, Humanities, Psychology, Spanish, Physics, Zoology and Chemistry: Provided, further, That such educational institution offers at least the following academic subjects in the main therapy course, namely: Anatomy, Physiology, Applied Kinesiology, Introduction to Nursing, Theory and Practice of Massage, Electrotherapy, Prosthetics, Splinting, Bandaging and Plasterwork, Exercise Therapy, General Medical and Surgical Conditions, Neurological and Orthopedic Conditions, Principles of Rehabilitation, Pathology, Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation, Selected Medical and Surgical Conditions, Administration and Ethics, Medical Psychology; or He has received a degree, if he is an applicant for the occupational therapy examination, in Occupational Therapy or any other title of equivalent standard from a school of occupational therapy duly recognized by the Government: Provided, That such educational institution offers at least the following academic subjects prior to admission in the main occupational therapy course, namely, English, Spanish, Humanities, Zoology, Chemistry, Sociology, Philippine History and Works of Rizal, Mathematics: Provided, further, That such educational institution offers at least the following academic subjects in the main occupational therapy course, namely, Biological Sciences consisting of Human Anatomy and Physiology, Neuroanatomy and Neurophysiology, and Kinesiology (Principles of Human Motion); Behavioral Sciences consisting of Human Development, Personality Development, Group Processes, Interpersonal and Interprofessional Relationships; Physical and Psychological Dysfunction Basic, General Pathology subjects including General and Medical Conditions, Neurological and Orthopedic Conditions, Pediatrics and Psychiatry; Occupational Therapy Skills consisting of Creative and Manual Arts, Vocational and Avocational Activities, Daily Living Skills and Teaching Techniques; Occupational Therapy Orientation Evaluation and Treatment, Principles of Physical and Psychosocial Dysfunction consisting of Organization and Administration, General Medical and Surgical Conditions Neurological and Orthopedic Conditions, Psychology, Prevocational.
f. He has completed at least nine months of internship in Physical Therapy in an adequate Physical Therapy Department of a hospital or clinic as certified by the Department of Health (DOH) or has at least nine months clinical experience under the supervision of a competent and duly registered occupational therapist in an accredited hospital or institution, as the case may be. Clinical experience shall include the effective treatment of psychosocial and physical dysfunction of patients of wide age range and of both sexes.

Scope of Occupational/Physical Therapist Board Examination

The examination shall consist of written and practical examinations. The scope shall be determined by the Board, taking into consideration the teaching plan of the schools legally constituted in the Philippines.

Based on Sec. 17 of Philippine Physical and Occupational Therapy Law, in order to pass the examination, an examinee must obtain a general rating of not below seventy five percent (75%) in the written examination with no rating below sixty percent (60%).

Oath of Profession

All successful examinees shall be required to take an oath of profession before any member of the Board or before any government official authorized by PRC or any person authorized by law to administer oaths, prior to entering upon the practice of physical and occupational therapy profession in the Philippines.

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