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Letters - 1 February 2012

Get involved now by sending your contributions by email to talkback@csp.org.uk or write to Letters, Frontline, 14 Bedford Row London WC1R 4ED. Letters should be no more than 250 words. Frontline reserves the right to edit letters. Please ensure you include your name, address and a daytime telephone number.

Disappointed from downunder

I would like to bring to your attention the disappointing outcome of applying with British physiotherapy qualifications to the Australian Physiotherapy Council for Assessment of Professional Equivalence.

I do not want fellow British professionals to go through the same procedure only to be informed they are unsuccessful.

I have a 2:1 BSc Degree in Sports and Exercise Sciences and a Merit MSc Degree in Physiotherapy (pre-registration) both obtained from the University of Birmingham, UK.

Under the guidance provided ( http://www.physiocouncil.com.au/assessment/assessment-of-equivalence-of-... there appeared to be no reason why my Masters qualifications would not be seen to be equivalent to an accredited entry level qualification in Australia.

The feedback I received was that the evidence I had provided did not meet requirements.  

It is unclear which overseas qualification would be deemed as substantially equivalent.

This seems especially inconsistent for UK qualifications as I have been informed the South Australian physiotherapy Masters courses are based on UK courses.

I am currently employed at a South Australian hospital as a physiotherapy assistant and my employers are equally baffled by the process.
Belinda Thoday (by email)

Birgit Mueller-Winkler, CSP’s  Professional Adviser, International Development, replies:  

It is indeed very difficult to get on the register via the Assessment of Professional Equivalence route.

Physiotherapists who intend to work in Australia are expected to go through the full exam process in order to get registered.

For those who plan to work there only temporarily, sitting the written exam and then working under supervision might be an option. Registration in New Zealand also grants automatic recognition  in Australia.

Once a month

Roger Waterworth (7 December 2011) wrote to Frontline thanking the CSP for keeping subscriptions down.

Could the CSP reduce them further by limiting the issue of Frontline to once a month?

Most organisations send out news electronically all the time so de we really need a paper communication every two weeks going out to 50,000 members?

How much would that save us in subscriptions?  It might even help save the planet!
Mark Nile, Stockton on Tees

James Hale, director of marketing and communications, replies:

Frontline magazine is one of many communication media used in an integrated way by the society to keep members informed of what’s happening within their profession, within the society, within the health sector and with regard to trade union matters.

For most members it is still the main way they are able to keep abreast of what is going on at the CSP, particularly during the NHS pension dispute.

While the website, emails, e-bulletins, iCSP bulletins and electronic stewards’ newsletters are the main ways of reaching particular segments of our membership,

Frontline goes to all 51,000 members and is an incredibly cost-effective way of communicating with them.

The production of Frontline is continually reviewed to ensure it remains the most suitable and cost-effective approach to communications with members.

Monthly copies could actually cost CSP more in the longer term as we might lose the benefits of bulk paper purchase and postage discounts and restrict potential recruitment advertising income.

However, one effective way to save the planet is to access the quarterly copy of Physiotherapy Journal online only.

The whole of Physiotherapy Journal, stretching back over 20 years, is now available online to all members, at www.csp.org.uk.  

The journal has a fully searchable index. If you want to opt for this – and to cancel your print version of Physiotherapy Journal – please call the CSP’s Enquiry Handling Unit, who can arrange this for you.

The burning question

What changes are being made to qualifying periods for unfair dismissal?

From 6 April 2012, the qualifying period for an employee to be able to lodge a claim for unfair dismissal will increase from one to two years.

This is the minimum time a person must have been employed for a claim to be considered.

However the qualifying period will remain at one year for people employed on or before April 5th 2012.

The qualifying service rule does not apply in the case of most dismissals that are for automatically unfair reasons, which include health and safety reasons, pregnancy, protected disclosure or asserting a statutory right.

The qualifying service rule does not apply in cases of discrimination. If you have been or are being dismissed, contact your local CSP steward for advice

This is intended as general information only and does not replace individual advice.

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