Is becoming an orthotist and prosthetist right for me?
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How to become an Orthotist and Prosthetist
In order to become an orthotist and prosthetist, individuals must now complete a master’s degree in orthotics and prosthetics. Classes include anatomy and physiology, neuroscience and neuroanatomy, prosthetics and orthotics materials, prosthetic management of upper and lower limbs, spinal orthotics, gait pathokinesiology, histology and research. There is also a clinical component in which the student can work under the direction of an orthotist or prosthetist. Master’s programs usually take two years to complete. A one-year NCOPE-approved residency is also required.
Some states require orthotists and prosthetists to be licensed. These states often require certification in order to practice, although requirements vary by state. Many orthotists and prosthetists become certified regardless of state requirements.
The American Board for Certification in Orthotics, Prosthetics & Pedorthics (ABC) and the Board of Certification/Accreditation (BOC) offer certifications. To earn certification, a candidate must complete a CAAHEP-accredited master’s program, an NCOPE-accredited residency program, and pass a series of three exams.