Orthotics and prosthetics are medical areas that focus on design of artificial limbs or braces. Prosthetists work with amputees or people born with missing limbs. They help these patients go through their regular daily functions by creating artificial legs, arms, feet or hands. Orthotists work patients with injured or damaged body parts. They create spine braces or corrective shoes, for example. These specialists interview and measure their patients before designing any devices to make sure they are custom fit for each individual.
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The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average annual salary of orthotists and prosthetists in 2009 was £43,290. The wages ranged from the lowest of £22,100 to the highest of £67,951 per year, or £10.60 to £32.6 per hour. The median salary was reported at £40,345 a year, or £19.40 an hour.
In 2009, 2,170 out of 5,470 working orthotists and prosthetists were employed by the medical equipment and supply manufacturers with an average annual wage of £47,125, according to the bureau. Health and personal care stores were next with 1,070 employed and an average salary of £44,999. Private doctors' offices, the federal government and general and medical hospitals were the other three top-five largest employers of orthotists and prosthetists with average salaries ranging from £35,100 to £44,102 a year.
According to the bureau, wholesalers of commercial and professional equipment and supplies paid the highest salaries to orthotists and prosthetists in 2009, £48,022 a year on average. Manufacturers of medical equipment and supplies, health and personal care stores, and the federal government were the next three top-paying employers. The fifth highest-paying employers in 2009 were outpatient care organisations, with an annual mean wage of £43,355.
In 2009 New Hampshire paid the highest salary to orthotists and prosthetists, £56,901 a year on average, and had one of the highest concentrations of these specialists, 0.101 per 1,000 workers, as indicated by the bureau. Connecticut, Indiana and Texas also had top-five wages ranging from £52,019 to £53,761 a year on average. Rhode Island paid the smallest mean salary out of the top five highest-paying states, £49,881 a year. Houston, Texas, paid the top average salary for the profession, £66,885 a year. Nassau, New York, and Indianapolis, Indiana, paid some of the highest salaries as well, £61,288 and £60,976 a year, respectively.
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