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Applications for Foreign Educated PTs


PHYSICAL THERAPY BOARD APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS FOR FOREIGN GRADUATES

The Physical Therapy Board is appointed by the Governor to act on issues regarding physical therapist licensure standards, enforcement of laws and complaint review. The Board is composed of five physical therapists, one licensed physician, two physical therapist assistants, and three public members.

TITLE PROTECTION

Nonlicensed individuals are prohibited from using the title "Physical Therapist," "Physiotherapist," "Physical Therapy Technician," "Registered Physical Therapist," "Licensed Physical Therapist," "P.T.," " P.T.T.," "R.P.T.," "L.P.T." or any other words, letters, abbreviations, or insignia indicating or implying that the individual is licensed by the state. Nonlicensed individuals holding themselves out as a physical therapist shall be subject to criminal prosecution for the unauthorized practice.

LICENSURE REQUIREMENTS

Foreign Educated Graduates. To establish eligibility for licensure, an applicant must have successfully completed a physical therapy educational program that meets the standards of Minnesota Statute 148.721 including 60 credits in general education; have successfully completed a six-month supervised traineeship, and have passed an approved licensing exam.

OVERVIEW OF THE LICENSURE PROCESS FOR FOREIGN EDUCATED PTS

Complete the application form and submit the required supporting documentation.

Obtain the FCCPT Comprehensive Credentials Evaluation (Type 1 Certificate) OR the FCCPT Educational Credentials Review and TOEFL (information available at http://www.fccpt.org)

When the application is complete and the applicant's educational credentials meet Minnesota statutory requirements, then the applicant may request Board review and approval of a six month supervised traineeship and apply for a temporary permit for the supervised traineeship. A temporary permit may not be issued to a foreign educated PT who has had a temporary permit for more than six months in any other state.

The supervised traineeship is required to be:

  • At least six months (based on 40 hours per week);
  • At a board approved facility;
  • Provide for a broad-based clinical experience including a variety of physical agents, therapeutic exercises, evaluation procedures, and patient diagnoses;
  • Supervised by a licensed PT with at least 3 years of clinical experience;
  • Supervisor and Site approved by the Board before the start of the traineeship; and
  • Successfully completed by the applicant.

The supervised traineeship may be waived by the Board for a foreign educated PT who is licensed or registered in another state and has successfully practiced PT under supervision for at least 6 months at a facility that meets the requirements for a supervised traineeship.

The applicant may take the NPTE (exam) after successful completion of the supervised traineeship.

An applicant who is licensed in another state and has previously taken the exam (PES, ASI, or NPTE) may have their scores transferred to Minnesota. For exams taken prior to July 2, 1995, Minnesota's passing score is 1 standard deviation below the mean. Score transfers may be requested online at: http://www.fsbpt.org

DELEGATION OF DUTIES

The PT is responsible for all procedures or tasks delegated to a PTA or PT Aide.

PT Assistant. The PT may delegate patient treatment procedures to a qualified PT Assistant (PTA) except: patient evaluation, treatment planning, initial treatment, change of treatment, and initial or final documentation. The PT must provide on-site observation of the treatment and documentation of its appropriateness at least every six treatment sessions. A PT may supervise no more than two PTAs at any time. The PT is not required to be onsite, but must be easily available by telecommunication.

PT Aide. A PT may assign selected treatment procedures to a PT Aide. The PT must observe the patient's status before and after the treatment. All tasks must be performed under the direct supervision of a PT who is readily available for advice, instruction, or immediate assistance.

CONTINUING EDUCATION

Each licensed physical therapist must complete at least 20 contact hours of continuing education credit every two years as a condition of licensure renewal. Newly licensed physical therapists commence their two year cycle on January 1 immediately following the date licensure was granted, and continuing education credits may be accrued during the first partial year in addition to the two full years of licensure. Licensees are required to attest to completion of continuing education by reporting to the Board at renewal time. Continuing education documentation must be retained by each licensee in the event they are selected for an audit.

PRACTICE REQUIREMENT

Physical therapists must practice the equivalent of eight full weeks (320 hours) during the past five years in order to be issued a license, renew, reinstate following a lapse in licensure, or return to active licensure status from inactive status. Alternatively, physical therapists may choose to retake and pass the National Physical Therapy Exam or complete no less than eight weeks of Board approved supervised clinical practice. The supervised clinical practice length and site must be pre-approved by the Board.

RENEWAL CYCLE

Licensure must be renewed annually before January 1 of each year. Renewal reminders are sent approximately 45 days prior to expiration. It is the physical therapist's responsibility to keep the Board advised of their current address with written notification within 30 days of any address change. The Board will mail the renewal reminder to the address on file. Failure to receive the renewal reminder does not relieve the physical therapist of his or her renewal obligation. 

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