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Benefits of Studying Physiotherapy abroad

Physiotherapy - benefits of studying abroad. This article enlightens you about the flourishing career options available and suggests how a degree abroad will give you that edge over others.

Antony Chacko

As physiotherapists are able to treat a wide range of disorders, they are in huge demand. Countries like the USA, Australia and Canada offer excellent job prospects for qualified physiotherapists.

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With physiotherapy being viewed as a more efficient and affordable treatment option compared to traditional medication, the demand for qualified physiotherapists and their services has increased in recent years.

Physiotherapists either specialize in a certain area of practice or treat an extensive range of conditions. Areas of specialty include sports medicine, paediatrics, cardiopulmonary, geriatrics, neurology, and orthopaedics. It is a flourishing career option today and a degree abroad will give you that edge over others in the industry.

What the courses cover

If you are interested in studying physiotherapy abroad, you have different study options to choose from. You can either take up a combined Bachelor of Health Science/Master of Physiotherapy- a dual program that you complete in four years, or go for a Bachelor of Science degree in an area of specialisation within physiotherapy such as Sports Rehabilitation. If you already have a bachelor’s degree, you can further enhance your skills with a master’s degree in physiotherapy practice. Below are details about a few of these courses offered by leading universities abroad.  

The Bachelor of Health Science/Master of Physiotherapy programme offered by the University of Western Sydney in Australia lays emphasis on the relationship between the therapist and the client. The first three years of the programme result in a Bachelor of Health Science qualification. You will study core common subjects with other health science students. Building a solid, broad understanding of biomedicine and various health science fields in this way will give you a deeper understanding of physiotherapy, help you to work in interdisciplinary teams and centres, and assist you in advising clients on treatment options. Students can also specialise in Therapeutic Recreation from the Bachelor of Health Science. The course is taught through classroom lectures, hands-on learning, practical classes, and laboratory work.

The BSc (Hons) degree in Sports Rehabilitation offered by University of Hull, United Kingdom provides graduates with the necessary skills, knowledge and training to undertake specific training and rehabilitation programmes for injured athletes; It therefore fills the 'gap' between the generalist physiotherapist undergraduate training and that of the sport scientist; an applied, reflective and problem solving approach to assessments and evidence-based musculoskeletal management is utilised throughout the course; it incorporates subjects such as applied anatomy, physiology, biomechanics, manual therapy, electrotherapy, remedial exercise therapy, exercise physiology, sports nutrition and training techniques. Fieldwork placements constitute a significant component of the course in years 2 and 3, developing both interpersonal and clinical skills; the training gives the graduate sport rehabilitator the necessary skills to provide prevention, accurate assessment and diagnosis of injuries, and the rehabilitation techniques to get the athlete back to maximum performance in the shortest time possible; the course is accredited with the British Association of Sports Rehabilitators and Trainers.

The Doctorate of Physical Therapy offered by the University of Central Florida, in the US, is an accredited post-baccalaureate programme that includes both classroom and clinical internships. Students who successfully complete the program will qualify to take the national physical therapy licensure examination.

The Master’s programme in Physiotherapy Practice at La Trobe University, Australia enables students with a relevant first degree to obtain a professional qualification in physiotherapy. In the first semester students develop clinical reasoning, assessment and treatment skills in the core areas of cardio respiratory, musculoskeletal and neurological physiotherapy across the lifespan. This is followed by 18 months of integrated theory and clinical practice subjects, during which students are primarily located in the clinical environment.

Course pre-requisites

Candidates who have completed 17 years of age and passed the 10+2 or equivalent examination, with Physics, Chemistry, Biology and English are eligible to apply for a bachelor’s degree in Physiotherapy. To be eligible for a Master of Physiotherapy course, a bachelor’s degree in health sciences or a related field is required.

Career opportunities

As physiotherapists can treat a wide range of disorders, they are in huge demand today. Numerous clinics, hospitals, health departments, private nursing homes and rehabilitation centres both in India and abroad employ physiotherapists. Countries such as USA, Australia and Canada offer excellent job prospects for qualified physical therapists.

With a qualification in physiotherapy and a little industry experience, you can also set up your own private practice.

With people becoming more health conscious, there is an increased need for physical therapists to create exercise programs, to assess the safety of workplaces, and to teach preventative care in the workplace and home.

One of the emerging fields of Physiotherapy is sports injury. As a sports physiotherapist you can find opportunities in any sports club, sports team or start your own clinic.

Worried about choosing the right course?

Jenifer G Jenifer G,
Study abroad expert.
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