United States Physical Therapy Practice Acts

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Temporary License Requirements/Availability[1][edit | edit source]

IC 25-27-1-1

Indiana defines physical therapy as the "evaluation of, administration of, or instruction in physical rehabilitative and habilitative techniques and procedures to evaluate, prevent, correct, treat, alleviate, and limit physical disability, pathokinesiological function, bodily malfunction, pain from injury, disease, and any other physical disability or mental disorder."  Physical therapy includes "the use of physical measures, agents, and devices for preventive and therapeutic purposes; neurodevelopmental procedures; performance, interpretation, and evaluation of physical therapy tests and measurements; and provision of consultative, educational, and other advisory services for the purpose of preventing or reducing the incidence and severity of physical disability, bodily malfunction, and pain." 

IC 25-27-1-8
The state will issue no more than two temporary licenses. With a temporary license, the person must practice with direct supervision of a licensed PT. Temporary licenses will be issued to individuals who have a valid license from another state, applied for and been approved by the committee to take the licensure exam, not previously failed the licensure exam in Indiana or any other state. For the committee to approve applicants, they must have graduated from a school or program of physical therapy. The temporary license expires after the applicant becomes licensed or certified by the committee or after an application for licensure has been denied. An application will be denied if the applicant fails to take the examination within the timeframe provided by the committee or the applicant does not pass the examination.

The committee refers to five members who assist the board in decisions regarding qualifications and examinations.  The committee consists of three PTs, a licensed physician, and one member who is a resident of the state not associated with physical therapy except for as a consumer.  The PTs must be licensed, have three years of experience, and be a resident of Indiana.  

Requirements for License[1][edit | edit source]

IC 25-27-1-8 and IC 25-27-1-6
In order to gain a license the applicant must successfully pass the examination and be otherwise qualified. Other qualifications consist of not having a conviction for a crime that has direct bearing on the ability to practice competently and not had disciplinary action initiated by the licensing agency of another state. The applicant must also have proof of graduation from a school or program of physical therapy and must submit an application form and fee to the committee. A renewal fee must be paid biennially on or before the date set by the Indiana professional licensing agency. If the renewal fee is not paid the license will become invalid and a penalty fee must be paid.

Supervision[1][edit | edit source]

Title 844 IAC 6-1-2
The PT or physician must be available during all treatments provided by the PTA. The PT or physician shall be absolutely responsible for the direction and actions of the PTA. This same level of supervision is required for those who possess a temporary license as well as all documentation signed by the licensed PT or physician. If the PT or physician are not on the premises then the PTA must check in at least once during the working day to review all patients' treatments. For someone who has a temporary license, he/she must have a face-to-face meeting regarding each patient's care if the PT or physician are not on site. Care provided to patients is always the responsibility of the supervising PT or physician. The PT can supervise no more than 3 full-time employees if consultation is not face-to-face. There are no specified standards for the number of persons supervised by an on-site PT. Examines must be completed by the PT or physician every fourteen days for inpatients in a hospital or rehabilitation facility; every 90 days (or 6 PT visits) for those in a facility for mentally retarded; every 30 days (or 15 PT visits) for all patients.

Physical Therapy Students[1][edit | edit source]

Title 844 IAC 6-1-4
A physical therapy student from a non-accredited educational program may apply to the committee for approval justifying the program meets the standards of approval set by the committee and CAPTE.

Information regarding the role of a physical therapy student could not be located in the Practice Act.

Continued Competence[edit | edit source]

Continuing education is required in order to renew a license in the state of Indiana. The licensed PT must provide a statement that continuing education requirements have been met. The PT must maintain copies of certificates of completion for three years after the end of the licensing period that the courses were used under. If audited, the PT must submit copies of the certificates.[2] According to the Indiana Chapter of APTA, the state is projected to require 22 hours of continuing education. This is currently still in legislation.[3]

Per biennium 22 hours, in discussion but legislation has passed.

Does the Act appear restrictive? Why/Why not?[1]
[edit | edit source]

Title 844 IAC 6-1-2
The Act does appear restrictive because a licensed PT does not have direct access to provide patient care.  In order to evaluate and treat a patient, the PT must have a referral from a physician, podiatrist, psychologist, chiropractor, or dentist.  The Act also lists out the inclusion criteria for what physical therapy consists of thus, adding to the restrictive nature of the Act.  

Is there anything unusual about this act?[1][edit | edit source]

Title 844 IAC 6-1-3
The standards of practice states patient care shall be "under the direction of a licensed physical therapist who is qualified by experience, demonstrated ability, and specialized education." The Act does not define how "qualified by experience" is quantified. It is also not clear what "demonstrated ability" entails.

References[edit | edit source]

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  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Physical Therapy Committee: Laws and Regulations. Indianapolis: Indiana Professional Licensing Agency; 2011 [cited 2012 April 17]. Available from:
  2. Indiana Professional Licensing Agency. Indianapolis: Indiana Government Center-South; 2011 [cited 2012 April 17]. Available from:
  3. Indiana Chapter: American Physical Therapy Association. 2012 [cited 2012 April 21]. Available from:

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.