Colorado

United States Physical Therapy Practice Acts

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Temporary License Requirements/Availability

Repealed[1].

Requirements for License[1]

• Must successfully complete a physical therapy program that is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency; or that the board has determined to be substantially equivalent.
• Must pass a written examination that is approved by the board and a national examination accredited by a nationally recognized agency
• Must submit an application in the form and manner designated by the director and pay a fee in the amount determined by the director.
• The board may refuse to permit an applicant to take the examination if the application is incomplete, if the applicant is not qualified to sit for the examination, or if the applicant has committed any act that would be grounds for disciplinary action

Licensure by Endorsement[1]:
• Must possess a valid license in good standing from another state or territory of the United States.
• Submit an application in the form and manner designated by the director and pay a fee in an amount determined by the director.
• The director shall review the application and determine if the applicant is qualified to be licensed by endorsement.
• The board shall issue a license if the applicant fulfills the requirements if:

             o the applicant graduated from an accredited program within the past two years and passed an examination substantially equivalent to that specified in section.

             o The applicant has practiced as a licensed physical therapist for at least two of the five years immediately preceding the date of the application
             o The applicant has not practiced as a licensed physical therapist at least two of the last five years immediately preceding the date of the receipt of the application, 
             o The applicant passed an examination in another jurisdiction that is substantially equivalent to the examination previously specified
             o The applicant has demonstrated competency through successful completion of an internship or demonstrated competency as a physical therapist by fulfilling the requirements established by rules of the board.


Licensing of foreign-trained applicants[1]:
• The applicant should have received education and training in physical therapy substantially equivalent to the education and training required at accredited physical therapy programs in the United States
• Possess an active, valid license in good standing or other authorization to practice physical therapy from an appropriate authority in the country where the foreign-trained applicant is practicing or has practiced
• Pass a written examination approved by the board
• Submit an application in the form and manner designated by the director and pay an application fee in an amount determined by the director
• Upon receipt of all documents required, the director shall review the application and determine if the applicant is qualified to be licensed. When the applicant has fulfilled all requirements, the board shall issue a license to the applicant
• The board may deny the application if the applicant has committed an act which would be grounds for disciplinary action.


Supervision

A PT may supervise up to 4 individuals at a time who are not physical therapists, including certified nursing aides, to assist in a therapists clinical practice; except that this limit does not include physical therapy students for educational purposes[1].

Physical Therapy Students

Nothing contained in this practice act prohibits the practice of physical therapy by students enrolled in an accredited physical therapy program and performing under the direction and immediate supervision of a physical therapist currently licensed in this state[1].

Continued Competence[1]

o A licensed physical therapist shall maintain continuing professional competency to practice. The board shall adopt rules establishing a continuing professional competency program that includes, at a minimum, the following elements:
           • A self-assessment of the knowledge and skills of a physical therapist seeking to renew or reinstate a license
           • Development, execution, and documentation of a learning plan based on the assessment
           • Periodic demonstration of knowledge and skills through documentation of activities necessary to ensure at least minimal ability to safely practice the profession.
o A licensed physical therapist need not retake any examination required for initial licensure.
o The board shall establish that a licensed physical therapist satisfies the continuing competency requirements of this section.
o The requirements of this section apply to individual licensed physical therapists, and nothing in this section requires a person who employs or contracts with a physical therapist to comply with the requirements of this section.
o Records of assessments or other documentation developed or submitted in connection with the continuing professional competency program are confidential and not subject to inspection by the public or discovery in connection with a civil action against a licensed physical therapist. A person or the board shall not use the records or documents unless used by the board to determine whether a licensed physical therapist is maintaining continuing professional competency to engage in the profession.

Does the Act appear restrictive? Why/Why not?

No, because there are no restrictions for the Physical Therapy student as long as they are under supervision of a licensed Pysical Therapist in the state of Colorado.

Is there anything unusual about this act?

The wording of the definition of Physical Therapist in the Revised Statutes was confusing. It read "“Physical therapist” means a person who is licensed to practice physical therapy. The terms “physiotherapist” and “physical therapy technician” are synonymous with the term “physical therapist”[1]. A physical therapy technician can not be used synonymous in my mind.


Also, there was a section of regulations regarding physical therapy treatment of animals[2]:
• A physical therapist must have the knowledge, skill, ability and documented competency to perform an act that is within the scope of practice for physical therapists.

• The Director shall maintain a data base of all physical therapists that are qualified pursuant to this rule to practice physical therapy on animals in this state.
• All physical therapists that choose to practice physical therapy on animals shall provide the Director with therapist’s name, current address, education and qualifications to perform physical therapy on animals for inclusion in the data base rule. Information in the data base shall be open to public inspection at all times.

Recent Related Research (from Pubmed)

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References

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  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Colorado Physical Therapy Practice Act. Colorado Revised Statutes. Effective July 1, 2011. http://www.dora.state.co.us/physical-therapy/Statute.pdf.
  2. Colorado Physical Therapy Licensure Rules and Regulations. Department of Regulatory Agencies. Physical Therapy Licensure. Accessed 19 April 2012. http://www.dora.state.co.us/physical-therapy/rules.pdf

Disclaimer:   Informational Content is assimilated from the state practice act is a resource only and should not be considered a  substitute for the content within the state practice act.  All state practice acts can change and it is recommended that you refer to the original resource in the link above.