Orthotists and Prosthetists
Approximately 9,100 orthotists and prosthetists are employed at hospitals, rehabilitation centers, private brace and limb companies, and Veterans Administration facilities.
Many professional orthotic and prosthetic journals and associations list employment opportunities. Job seekers can apply directly to the personnel offices of any area hospitals or rehabilitation centers that have orthotic and prosthetic departments.
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs often has openings for qualified orthotists and prosthetists. Those who are interested in a job with the Veterans Administration should visit https://www.vacareers.va.gov.
In large prosthetics and orthotics departments in hospitals, clinics, and rehabilitation centers, certified practitioners may advance to supervisory, training, or other specialized positions. Other certified prosthetists and orthotists may decide to start their own private practice. Some decide to further their education and go into research or teaching.
Tips for Entry
Familiarize yourself with the profession by reading The O&P Almanac magazine, which is free for members of the American Orthotic and Prosthetic Association, https://www.aopanet.org.
Apply to a program through the Orthotics and Prosthetics Centralized Application Service, https://opcas.liaisoncas.com/applicant-ux/#/login. This site enables applicants to orthotics and prosthetics schools to electronically fill out one central application and use it for several schools. This outstanding service makes the application much easier.
Review the residency program description on the National Commission on Orthotic and Prosthetic Education's Web site to see if it interests you: https://ncope.org/index.php/home-page-v2/residency-and-professional-experiences.
To job shadow a professional in the field, go to http://www.opcareers.org. On the homepage there is a link to "Talk to an O&P Professional in Your Area." These individuals will answer your questions or provide an opportunitiy to come in and see them at work.