The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy

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Complaints against CSP members

This process explains what you should do if you have a concern or complaint about a member’s fitness to practise, the treatment or service they have offered you or their behaviour

CSP members include chartered physiotherapists, physiotherapist support workers and student physiotherapists. 

We try to make our processes as open and clear as possible and we hope you will find this information helpful.

Fitness to Practice Complaint

When we say that someone is ‘fit to practise’ we mean that they have the skills, knowledge and character needed to practise as a physiotherapist safely and effectively The Health and Care Professions Council handles complaints concerning the professional conduct or fitness to practice of a physiotherapy registrant.

If your complaint refers to a physiotherapist’s fitness to practice you will need to contact the Health and Care Professions Council as the regulator, by email at: ftp@hcpc-uk.org or by post to:

Fitness to Practise Department
The Health and Care Professions Council
184 Kennington Park Road
London
SE11 4BU

Misconduct or Professional Competence complaint

If your complaint refers to a physiotherapist, physiotherapy support worker or a student physiotherapist and their professional competence you will need to contact the physiotherapist’s employer or their University if a student. They will have their own complaints process in place to be able to deal with any concerns you may have.

Service or Treatment received by a Physiotherapist complaints

If your complaint refers to a service or treatment you have received by a physiotherapist you will need to contact PALS (Patient Advice and Liaison Service). They offer confidential advice, support and information on health related matters. PALS can help resolve concerns or problems when you are using the NHS and can help if you want to make a complaint. You can find your nearest PALS office on the NHS Choices website.

Social Media complaints

If your complaint refers to negative posts on social media please refer to the CSP’s social media guidance for CSP members or if you have further questions and enquiries you can contact one of our professional advisers who may be able to help. Contact them at paservice@csp.org.uk or on 020 306 6666.

Reputation of the Society

The CSP will only consider a complaint, if the complaint describes behaviour or conduct that could damage the reputation of the physiotherapy profession or the Society. Complaints of this type should initially be notified by email to our head of governance, Jo Hampton at hamptonj@csp.org.uk.

If the complaint is taken forward then the Coordinator will write explaining this and outlining what will happen next. The letter will also explain the remit of the CSP and possible sanctions (suspension or removal of membership).

The complaint will be presented to a Complaints Panel which will consist of a Council member (possibly the Vice Chair) who will act as a chair of the panel and up to 2 other members. These members may be CSP members or lay people, depending on the nature of the complaint. The composition of the panel will be agreed between the Panel Chair and the Complaints Coordinator.

Any complaints panel will need to react and deal with cases quickly. Having a broad potential membership to draw on will help with this. In addition, steps will be taken to use IT to ensure quick turnaround of work e.g. using email exchanges and video/phone conferences rather than face to face London-based meetings.

The complaints process includes a review stage, when either the complainant or the member can ask for the complaint panel decision to be reviewed. This will be explained to them in the decision letter. Any request for review must be received within 28 days of the decision letter being received. A review will check that the specified process has been followed and consider any new material or information. It will not repeat the work of the complaints panel.

The review will be undertaken by the Chair of the CSP Council, as the leader of the CSP and the physiotherapy profession. If the review is considering a panel decision to terminate CSP membership then the member will be able to attend and speak at part of the review session and be accompanied by an independent person (e.g. a friend).

The complaints procedure is not for:

  • making complaints about the professional conduct of chartered physiotherapists, physiotherapy support workers or student physiotherapists
  • contesting decisions on admission to membership of The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
  • making claims for damages arising out of policy decisions by The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy or contesting those policy decisions
  • investigating grievances raised by Chartered Society of Physiotherapy employees
  • investigating complaints about The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy made by Chartered Society of Physiotherapy staff, whether members or not
  • complaints about applications for subject access under the Data Protection Act 1998
  • the activities of organisations affiliated to The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, e.g. clinical interest and occupational groups
  • rehearing matters of complaint previously dealt with by The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy under former procedures.

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