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Student Reps Weekend: CSP chief Karen Middleton calls on physiotherapists to broadcast the benefits of their profession

13 February 2014 - 10:54am

Making a positive impact was a key theme at the student representatives development weekend, held in Leeds on 8-9 February.

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Karen Middleton, CEO at CSP

Physiotherapists are far too modest about their attributes and consequently do not ‘punch high enough within the system’, physiotherapist and new CSP chief executive Karen Middleton told delegates.

Ms Middleton said that physiotherapy is in a ‘prime position’ to make a dramatic impact on the sustainability of the NHS, with its focus on prevention, health and wellbeing.

Through promoting physical activity, getting people to be as independent as possible, enabling patients to be discharged more quickly and preventing people going to their GP or A&E, physios could make their mark.

Speaking out

‘It‘s about positioning our profession and developing you all as leaders,’ Ms Middleton said.

‘It always strikes me how other clinical professionals have no problem commenting – whether it’s on Twitter, Facebook or in journals - about anything and everything.

‘But as physios we only ever comment on things we know about or have the evidence on. So we have got to start feeling confident and contributing to the debate outside of physio so that they know about us.’

Ms Middleton called on physios to be more vocal about the difference they make. Physios should also be at conferences for other health professions, such as GPs, talking about physiotherapy.

‘It’s a big challenge, but I am completely optimistic and positive that we are in a good place and there are plenty of people who want to move us on to that next stage,’ she said.

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