The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy


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Charting the future of physiotherapy

A UK-wide debate kicked off this week as part of a programme of work that will form the basis of CSP guidance over the next decade

A discussion has been launched on interactiveCSP, the Society’s member networking website, as part of the Charting the Future project.

Members’ views will also be gathered through focus groups as well as through committee and clinical and special interest group meetings.

 ‘We want to stimulate a debate and get as many members as possible involved. But we also want to provide practical support to members in these changing times,’ said CtF project lead Virginia Wykes.

A major part of the project is to develop the first physiotherapy framework, which will capture the full range of physiotherapy roles, including support workers, and give examples of their work within a wide range of settings. This framework is intended for commissioners, service planners and educators, as well as the profession. A toolkit will be developed to support the use of the framework.

This project will also include development of guidance, produced in collaboration with service and education providers, outlining the expectations for learning and development programmes addressing the whole physio workforce. 

A new contemporary code of ethics and conduct for all members will also be developed; this will replace the existing Rules of Professional Conduct (2002), the Assistants Code of Conduct (2002) and the Core Standards of Physiotherapy Practice (2005).

‘This code is needed because the whole of society has changed. There is a much greater emphasis on client autonomy, rather than the days where physiotherapists were doing things to people,’ said Ms Wykes.

She added that the project would take account of current healthcare policies in all four UK countries. For example, for England this will include the NHS Next Stage Review and its impact on physiotherapy. The debates are likely to focus on the increased emphasis on public health and prevention, the restructuring of health services and use of new types of providers.

‘I am really looking forward to the debate. There is a lot of fear over the changes taking place and we want to be able to help physiotherapy to move into the future in a positive way,’ added Ms Wykes.

To contribute your views, go to the Charting the Future network on iCSP.

 Alternatively, email


A booklet about the CtF project will be included in the 17 September issue of Frontline. It is also available now to download from the CSP website at


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