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Letters - 5 February 2014

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.

Mark this

Following the CSP’s successful legal challenge of the trade mark used by ReboundTherapy.Org we would like to remind members that training is available from other sources (page 12, 22 January).

The Working Party has, over the last 14 years, trained a number of physiotherapists to teach a standardised rebound therapy course with a physiotherapeutic bias, linked to the CSP Safe Practice in Rebound Therapy paper (PA69). The trainers can teach locally or nationally.

If physios see courses and are concerned whether the trainer has been trained to this standard, they can contact the Working Party (email below) who can issue a list of current trainers.

The Working Party will also be reviewing the CSP Safe Practice in Rebound Therapy paper (PA69) and the CSP will be reissuing it later this year.

The current trainers meet on 3 March and would welcome discussion topics and research information.Email: debbi.cook@derbyshcft.nhs.uk
Debbi Cook (on behalf of the Working Party)

Sixty up

We are constantly being reminded how good the NHS pension scheme is but part-time staff can be treated unequally.   My colleague and I job share.

The NHS gains, as inevitably we each do more than our paid hours and never take the same week annual leave.

The team we lead never has a full week without one of us available. We share a job and a salary. Logic would lead you to believe then that we would share a pension. Wrong!  

Each of us will only receive one quarter of the pension the NHS would have to pay if one person did the job – a considerable saving for the NHS.

We both pay the same superannuation but a full-time worker would receive double the pension that I would.

Surely two people doing work valued financially as the same should receive the same pension, irrespective of how many hours they work.

Reaching the age of 60 this year, having spent many years as a hands-on physiotherapist in a heavy elderly rehab setting, I would like to retire as my body can no longer cope with the demands.

However, with the government moving my state pensionable age to 66 and only a part-time NHS pension to look forward to, I shall have to do my sums very carefully.
Adrienne Birch

Peter Finch, CSP assistant director of employment relations and union services, responds: The point about pension contributions for part-time staff is fair. Currently contributions are based on full time equivalent earnings rather than actual earnings. While under a final salary scheme this was deemed to be fair (many part-time staff do return to full-time working towards the end of their career) there is less justification for this under CARE (Career Average Revalued Earnings). We are aware of the disadvantages for part-time staff of paying pension contributions based on whole time equivalent earnings rather than actual earnings and the CSP is supporting a review of this as part of the discussions with the employers and other unions on the structure of the pension scheme post-2015.

Path to success

I read the ‘Critical Response’ article about rehabilitation in critical care (page 24, 1 January), which discusses the pathways that have been set up to achieve NICE guidance on early rehabilitation.

This is something we are auditing and then trying to develop in our department.

The MOTOmed trainer provides passive, active assisted or resisted exercise, without the need for a dedicated physio to be present throughout. This means the physio’s time can be used more effectively.  
Susan Calvert

Street life

I have been selected as the only volunteer to provide physiotherapy to the players at this year’s Street Child World Cup, which  uses football to engage political leaders.

The event precedes the 2014 World Cup in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I have to raise £1,600 to take a street child to Rio and pay my travel fees.

Visit: www.streechildworldcup.org Email: ericbandoo@yahoo.co.uk  To donate go to: www.btplc.com/mydonate and type in my name.
Eric Bandoo

You’ve ADDed...

Two members responded to the article titled ‘When I’m 68’ (page 16, 22 January 2014) which looked at the rising age of retirement.

Claire Betts said:  
CSP also needs to look at risk management for patients.

Not all older physiotherapists will function the same as younger ones, e.g. in cognitive function, stamina, reflexes, strength and balance thus possibly putting highly dependent/complex patients at risk whether through less effective clinical reasoning, slowed ability to anticipate falls and other sequelae and take the necessary action when  patient loses balance or shows other unwonted responses in therapy.

As the article indicates, we have very few older physiotherapists employed so we have no data to indicate how well or otherwise older ones are able to perform

There will always be exceptions to the rule who are in very good health and have been able to take maximal care to keep themselves fit and well. I do not mean to sound ageist, I’m in the 16 per cent over 49 and work with older people.

Cheshire Cat commented:
I am one of those physios still working over the age of 60.

Two years ago I had a hip replacement and also have a diagnosis of spinal stenosis and osteoarthritis in my lumbar spine and knee.

I am lucky to be working in an area where I don’t have to do very much lifting work.

If I was working in a really busy environment I know I would not be able to cope and would have to leave on health grounds.

I’m sure that I am not alone in being worried about raising the state pension age to 68.

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