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Where to get started to become a Physical Therapist in Maine

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Recent studies indicate that more than 44 percent of Maine residents were not regularly participating in daily activity and approximately 62 percent of residents in "The Pine Tree State" were considered to be obese or overweight. People who have excess weight are more prone to heart attack, stroke and osteoarthritis – all of which, are treatable and manageable through physical therapy.

If you're considering starting a career as a physical therapist in Maine, take a look at this salary list from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) for three of Maine's largest cities:

  • Bangor $72,130
  • Portland $66,280
  • Portsmouth $65,780

If you're wondering where to get started on your career path to becoming a physical therapist (or other career within the physical therapy field), keep reading to find out how to get it done in the state of Maine.

How to Become a PT in Maine

In order to start practicing physical therapy in Maine, an individual must first, become licensed by the Office of Licensing & Registration, as part of the Department of Professional and Financial Regulation. In the state of Maine, PTs are required to successfully complete a graduate program in physical therapy and pass the National Physical Therapy Exam (NPTE) provided by The Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT).

There are two main avenues for obtaining a physical therapy license in Maine – either by endorsement or examination. Applicants who have never held a license before should apply for a license through the License by Examination method, while applicants who have previously received licenses from a state other than Maine should apply for a PT License by Endorsement.

Initial License – License by Examinations

  1. Apply for the NPTE and pay the $25 exam fee – if the applicant has not yet, taken the exam
  2. Submit the license application along with a total fee of $136 ($75 application fee, $40 licensing fee and $21 for a background check
  3. Provide proof of NPTE test scores
  4. Submit a completed reference form – intended to demonstrate the applicant's competence and trustworthiness.
  5. Provide an official transcript from the applicant's PT degree program.

Foreign License – License by Endorsement

  1. Provide an official transcript from the applicant's PT degree program
  2. Submit the license application along with a total fee of $136 ($75 application fee, $40 licensing fee and $21 for a background check
  3. Provide a completed reference form – intended to demonstrate the applicant's competence and trustworthiness.
  4. Provide verification of license from another state – application packet contains the necessary form
  5. Verification of NPTE test scores from another state
  6. Supervisor's written statement (affidavit) of work experience.

Physical therapist licenses in Maine are issued each year and must be renewed every March 31st. The renewal fee is $60 (as of January 1, 2010). Licensed therapists within the state will receive a reminder via regular mail.

Note: Late renewals will receive an additional $50 late fee.

While there are no particular continuing education requirements in the state of Maine – anyone who is specially trained in the physical therapy field understands that continued education and training is extremely important and it is a critical aspect for anyone involved in a career in physical therapy. Many colleges in Maine offer continued education opportunities. In addition, the Maine sector of the American Physical Therapy Association's provides conferences and workshops to physical therapists, who would like to continue their education in the field of physical therapy.