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Career and Education Opportunities for Certified Prosthetists in Chicago, Illinois

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for certified prosthetists in the Chicago, Illinois area. Currently, 250 people work as certified prosthetists in Illinois. This is expected to grow 11% to 280 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for certified prosthetists are expected to grow by about 15.5%. In general, certified prosthetists assist patients with disabling conditions of limbs and spine or with partial or total absence of limb by fitting and preparing orthopedic braces or prostheses.

The income of a certified prosthetist is about $31 hourly or $65,190 yearly on average in Illinois. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $30 hourly or $62,590 yearly on average. Certified prosthetists earn more than people working in the category of Alternative and Specialized generally in Illinois and more than people in the Alternative and Specialized category nationally. Jobs in this field include: pedorthist, certified orthotic fitter, and orthotist.

There are 180 schools of higher education in the Chicago area, including one within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can get a degree to start your career as a certified prosthetist. The most common level of education for certified prosthetists is a post-Baccalaureate certificate. It will take a short time to learn to be a certified prosthetist if you already have a Bachelor's degree, or little over four years starting with a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Certified Prosthetist

Certified Prosthetist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, certified prosthetists assist patients with disabling conditions of limbs and spine or with partial or total absence of limb by fitting and preparing orthopedic braces or prostheses.

Certified prosthetists examine and measure patients to establish their appliance needs and to pinpoint factors that could affect appliance fit. They also fit and evaluate devices on patients, and make adjustments for proper fit and comfort. Equally important, certified prosthetists have to instruct patients in the use and up keep of orthoses and prostheses. They are often called upon to update skills and knowledge by attending conferences and seminars. They are expected to decide on materials and components to be used, on the basis of device layout. Finally, certified prosthetists update skills and knowledge by attending conferences and seminars.

Every day, certified prosthetists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.

It is important for certified prosthetists to publish research findings or present them at conferences and seminars. Somewhat less frequently, certified prosthetists are also expected to fit and evaluate devices on patients, and make adjustments for proper fit and comfort.

Certified prosthetists sometimes are asked to maintain patients' records. And finally, they sometimes have to make and modify plaster casts of areas that will be fitted with prostheses or orthoses, for use in the device construction process.

Like many other jobs, certified prosthetists must be thorough and dependable and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Chiropractor. Adjust spinal column and other articulations of the body to correct abnormalities of the human body believed to be caused by interference with the nervous system. Examine patient to determine nature and extent of disorder. Manipulate spine or other involved area. May utilize supplementary measures, such as exercise, rest, and nutritional therapy.
  • Dietician. Plan and conduct food service or nutritional programs to assist in the promotion of health and control of disease. May supervise activities of a department providing quantity food services, counsel individuals, or conduct nutritional research.
  • Respiratory Therapist. Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, and operate equipment.
  • Speech and Language Teacher. Assess and treat persons with speech, language, and fluency disorders. May select alternative communication systems and teach their use. May perform research related to speech and language problems.
  • Sports Trainer. Evaluate, advise, and treat athletes to assist recovery from injury, avoid injury, or maintain peak physical fitness.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Certified Prosthetist Training

Northwestern University - Evanston, IL

Northwestern University, 633 Clark St, Evanston, IL 60208. Northwestern University is a large university located in Evanston, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 20,128 students and an admission rate of 27%. Northwestern University has a post-master's certificate program in Orthotist/Prosthetist which graduated forty-one students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon Associate Fellow: Your Associate Fellow certificate lets your patients know that you are an experienced, credentialed implant professional.

For more information, see the American Academy of Implant Dentistry website.

Orthotic and Prosthetic Certification: An ABC certified orthotist and/or prosthetist is a health care professional who is specifically educated and trained to manage the comprehensive orthotic and/or prosthetic patient care.

For more information, see the American Board for Certification in Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics, Inc. website.

Orthotic and Prosthetic Technician: ABC technician registration is awarded as an attestation of competency for the public, those who require orthotic/prosthetic services, and those in other health professions.

For more information, see the American Board for Certification in Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics, Inc. website.

Certified Fitter-Orthotic: An ABC Certified Fitter of Orthotics is an individual trained and qualified to participate in the fitting and delivery of prefabricated orthotic devices and/or soft goods.

For more information, see the American Board for Certification in Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics, Inc. website.

LICENSES

ORTHOTICS, PROSTHETICS, AND PEDORTHICS

Licensing agency: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
Address: 320 West Washington, Springfield, IL 62786

Phone: (217) 782-8556
Website: Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation

LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.