Occupational physiotherapist: CSP/COT joint position statement

Physiotherapists can call themselves ‘occupational physiotherapists’, but they must make it clear to the people they treat exactly what their specialism is, and what services they offer, the CSP and the College of Occupational Therapists have agreed.

The CSP drew up the agreement with the COT after occupational therapists expressed concern that some CSP members working in vocational rehabilitation and fit-for-work schemes, described themselves as ‘occupational physiotherapists’.

HPC advise
The agreement has been ratified by the HPC, which has advised that protected titles can be used in conjunction with a descriptor.

The agreement advises physiotherapists working in these fields to use their professional discretion and judgement to decide how best to describe their role. It suggests ‘occupational health physiotherapist’, or ‘physiotherapist (occupational health)’ as possibilities.

Key points in joint statement
The key points in this joint statement, produced by the College of Occupational Therapists (COT) and Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP), are as follows:

  • The HPC has affirmed the acceptability of health professionals on its register attaching descriptors to their protected title to clarify their particular area of specialism
  • The CSP and COT expect their members to describe themselves (including in attaching additional descriptors to their protected title) in ways that maximise clarity and minimise confusion for the recipients, consumers and purchasers of their services
  • Both chartered physiotherapists and occupational therapists have an increasingly valuable role to play in delivering services that are focused on the health and well-being needs and quality of life of the working population and those seeking to return to purposeful activity, and can make a significant contribution to meeting identified UK government priorities in this area.

I’m glad this came about, otherwise, we would have had to add another burden onto ourselves (apart from credit card processing) by having to constantly explain what the difference was between these two professions.

Click here to read the joint statement in full at the CSP website.

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