Pediatric physical therapy employs exercises and other rehabilitative techniques for children to improve or regain body function. These patients may include those with birth defects, illnesses occurring at birth or during childhood and accidents or other traumatic events. Occupational therapy focuses on enhancing activities of daily life. For some health professionals, these functions may overlap with pediatric occupational therapists incorporating physical therapy in their work. In the United States, the mean pediatric physical therapist salary is $68,646. The figure stands at C$93,424 ($73,173 USD) in Canada, ￡31,474 ($44,070 USD) in the United Kingdom, and AU$61,793 ($47,390 USD) in Australia. For those in the Zealand, the mean registers at NZD$58,974 ($42,501 USD) for physiotherapists. The salaries reported for physiologists and pediatric occupational therapists offer a fair guide of the pay where salaries may not be reported specifically for pediatric physical therapists.
How Much Does a Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary Make?
[table id=121 /]
Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary Determinant Factors
In the field of physical therapy, which includes pediatric physical therapy, experience can play a major factor in the earning of pay. Generally those who accumulate more experience can earn well above the median or mean pay.
Work settings also figures prominently in earnings. This includes those who can set their own earnings by being self-employed. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics says that seven percent of physical therapists in the United States were self-employed, while 26 percent in Canada fell within that category. Also, occupational therapists in Canada, which include those who may work with children, were self-employed at a rate of 22 percent.
As a general rule, working in private practice affords higher pay than working for a government agency or under the auspices of a publicly-funded health system.
1. How Much Does a Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary Make by Country?
Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary in US
As reported by PayScale, the mean pay for pediatric physical therapist in the United States sits at $68,646. Earnings for these practitioners have a range of $49,861 to $101,359.
Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary in Canada
According to salary expert, the mean pay stands at C$93,424 for pediatric physical therapist in Canada. Pay runs between C$65,769 and C$115,856.
Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary in UK
PayScale states that pediatric occupational therapists in the United Kingdom earn on mean basis ￡31,474. The pay range goes from ￡26,064 to ￡165,284.
Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary in Australia
Based upon payscale, a pediatric occupational therapist in Australia can expect a mean salary of $61,793. Earnings run from AU$46,383 to AU$81,561.
Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary in New Zealand
2. How Much Does a Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary Make According to Experience?
For pediatric physical therapists in the United States, experience has a modest effect on pay. The entry level mean sits at $65,000. Those who have attained five to ten years experience can expect to earn $76,000 on a mean basis, while ten to 20 years of experience yields a mean pay of $77,000.
As reported by SalaryExpert, entry-level pediatric physical therapists in Canada have a mean pay at C$65,769. At the senior level of experience, pay increases to an average of C$115,856.
According to PayScale, mid-career pediatric occupational therapists in Australia see their pay ascend to 17% above the national average. Those with less than 5 years in the field make 4% less than the mean for Australia.
For pediatric and other occupational or physical therapists in New Zealand with 6 or less years of experience can expect to make between NZD$47,000 and NZD$68,000.
Attaining more than six years of experience generally results in pay that runs from NZD$68,000 to NZD$99,000. These pay ranges are for therapists who work in one of the country’s District Boards of Health.
3. How Much Does a Pediatric Physical Therapist Salary Make According to Work Environment?
In the United States, physical therapists who work in environment with children are among the highest paid in the field. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, therapists who work in “Other Schools and Instruction” have an annual mean pay of $95,740. This ranks second only behind physical therapists in “Home Health Care Services,” who make on average $96,070. The “Child Day Care Services” sector is ranked fifth, at $90,410.
Occupational therapists in the United Kingdom’s National Health Service receive pay on Band 5 at the start. This translates to earnings from ￡22,128 and ￡28,746. Those who advance to senior roles in pediatric occupational therapy can garner from ￡26,565 to ￡35,577 on Band 6 and ￡31,696 and ￡41,787 on Band 7.
In New Zealand, pediatric physical therapists and other physiologists often work in one of the country’s district boards of health. The pay for such therapists runs between $47,000 and NZD$99,000 per year. In private practice, the pay range starts at NZD$45,000 and reaches as high as NZD$110,000.
The work environment may also take into account the city of practice. Pediatric physical therapist in New York City earn 50 percent higher than the US national mean of $68,646. The pay for a pediatric occupational therapist in Perth Australia rises 13 percent above the Australian national mean, while therapists in Sydney earn four percent less than the national average. The figure runs five percent below the average in Melbourne and seven percent under the national mean in Brisbane.
Pediatric physical therapists typically work full time. Part time work does have a presence in the field. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 20 percent of physical therapists work part-time in 2016. In these ranks include those who do not work in schools. According to Job Bank Canada, nearly one quarter of physical therapists, or physiotherapist, in Canada were part-time workers.
The schedule of these professionals will depend upon the setting in which they work.
Typically, pediatric physical therapist will keep daytime hours and work during the weekdays. This is especially the case for those employed in schools. Outside the school context, hours may extend into evenings and weekends to accommodate the schedule of patients and their families.
Work schedules for those in hospitals may also include evenings or weekends, though irregular hours such as overnights or holidays are less likely since physical therapy generally is not an emergency procedure.
For pediatric physical therapist working in patience homes, travel is often required.
Bonuses and Benefits
Payscale reports that pediatric physical therapists in the United States enjoy bonuses ranging from $440 to $5,034. The average profit sharing plan contributes $1,500 worth of benefits.
In Canada, pediatric physical therapists enjoy bonuses on a mean basis of C$1,710. Payscale puts the average bonus for a pediatric occupational therapist in Australia at AU$1,250. Physiotherapists in New Zealand collect bonuses spanning a width of NZD$491 to NZD$10,101. Profit-sharing averages NZD$35,000, while commissions run on a mean basis NZD$15,075.
Nearly seven out of ten pediatric physical therapists in the United States tell payscale that they have medical coverage. Just over half enjoy dental benefits, while the coverage rate for vision stands at 39 percent. In New Zealand, few physiotherapists report having health benefits. Coverage rates for medical, dental and vision reach 11 percent, two percent, and two percent respectively.
According to Canadian Business Magazine, there were 12,100 occupational therapist in Canada, including those who work in schools and healthcare facilities. This number represents a 32% increase in the number of employees between 2009 and 2015. Physiotherapists, who may also be treated as physical therapists in Canada, should see 5,800 additional jobs by 2024 and 10,900 projected job openings by that time. Job Bank Canada projects there will be 11,000 people seeking those jobs.
According to Job Outlook Australia, the physiotherapist field should see an increase of positions from 30,300 in 2017 to 39,200 in 2022. In this time interval, Australia should have 17,000 job openings due to turnover, retirement and the creation of new positions. The National Health Service reports that the United Kingdom had 37,922 occupational therapists who were registered with the Health and Care Professions Council.
Even with the demand for pediatric physical therapy, the level of experience can impact job prospects. According to Careers New Zealand, employment prospects prove better for those with experience. By contrast, those seeking to enter the profession should expect more difficulty finding employment.
For professionals performing pediatric physical therapy, whether exclusively or in connection with occupational therapy, pay increases generally with experience. Private practice affords opportunities to set rates and determine hours of work. Demand for pediatric physical therapy is sustained from the need and desire of parents to improve the within children their physical body movements and abilities to engage in the daily activities of life.