Job Setting/Employment - Michigan Athletic Trainers Society (MATS)

Job Setting/Employment

ATs are highly qualified, multi-skilled health care professionals, and are under the allied health professions category as defined by Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Athletic trainers are assigned National Provider Identifier (NPI) numbers, and the taxonomy code for athletic trainers is 2255A2300X. Athletic trainers are listed in the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the “professional and related occupations” section. The Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes for ATs are athletic training evaluation (97005) and re-evaluation (97006); these codes are part of the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PMR) CPT family of codes. The American Hospital Association established Uniform Billing (UB) codes - or revenue codes - for athletic training in 1999. The term “qualified health care professional,” as found in the CPT code book, is a generic term used to define the professional performing the service described by the code. The term “therapist” is not intended to denote any specific practice or specialty field within PMR and many of the current PMR procedural codes are not exclusive to any one profession allowing licensed health care professionals to function according to their licensure standards and the public health code. Facts about job and employment settings for ATs are listed as follows:
  •  ATs relieve widespread and future workforce shortages in primary care support and outpatient rehab professions.
  • Physicians, hospitals, clinics and other employers demand ATs for their versatile wellness services, and injury and illness prevention skills.
  • Employers demand ATs for their knowledge and skills in manual therapy and similar treatments for musculoskeletal conditions, including back pain.
  • ATs commonly supervise and motivate obese clients and patients to safely improve their health and fitness.
  • ATs commonly work with patients with asthma, diabetes, heart disease and other health conditions.
  • ATs work under different job titles (wellness manager, physician extender, rehab specialist, etc.). 
  • In a patient-centered team, adding ATs to the team does not cost the health care system money. Studies demonstrate that the services of ATs save money for employers and improve quality of life for patients. For each $1 invested in preventive care, employers gained up to a $7 return on investment, according to two independent studies.
  • Results from a nationwide Medical Outcomes Survey demonstrate that care provided by ATs effects a significant change in all outcome variables measured, with the greatest change in functional and physical outcomes. The investigation indicates that care provided by ATs generates a positive change in health related quality of life patient outcomes. (Ref: Journal of Rehabilitation Outcomes Measure 1999; 3 (3):51-56.)
  • ATs are employed in physician offices as physician extenders, similar to nurses, physician assistants, physical therapists and other professional clinical personnel.
  • ATs can serve roles as mid level providers in rural and urban hospitals, hospital emergency rooms, urgent and ambulatory care centers.
  • ATs are valuable members of the rehabilitation process in clinics with specialties in sports medicine, cardiac rehab, medical fitness, wellness and physical medicine and rehabilitation.
  • ATs are commonly employed in occupational health departments in commercial settings, which include manufacturing, distribution and offices to assist with ergonomics, injury prevention, acute care, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of various workplace injuries and illnesses.
  • Police and fire departments and academies, public safety and municipal departments, and all branches of the military are recognizing the value of having ATs as part of their medical team.
  • ATs are an integral part of the health care team at public and private secondary schools, colleges and universities, professional and Olympic sports.
  • Quality of care for youth athletes is greatly improved when ATS are employed at youth leagues, municipal and independently owned youth sports facilities.


© 2019 Michigan Athletic Trainers Society, Inc. All Rights Reserved.