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Thousands of patients in Northern Ireland could benefit from independent prescribing rights for physiotherapists and podiatrists

CSP press release published on 29 April 2014

The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) in Northern Ireland and the College of Podiatry will today (29th April) host a conference at the University of Ulster outlining the benefits of physiotherapists and podiatrists being able to independently prescribe medicines to their patients.

It is hoped that legislation to enable independent prescribing by physiotherapists and podiatrists will soon be introduced in Northern Ireland, as it has or is about to, elsewhere in the UK.

The additional prescribing responsibility can greatly improve care for patients, as suitably trained physiotherapists can prescribe a range of medicines relevant to their area of practice without needing a signature from a doctor.

The ability to prescribe medicines means faster and quicker access to treatment for patients and makes more efficient use of health service resources.

In particular, people with long-term chronic conditions will benefit from being treated closer to home and in a more timely manner, enabling them to access pain relief and other medication and to better manage their condition.

Professor Karen Middleton, CSP Chief Executive and formerly Chief Health Professions Officer at the Department of Health in England, who was instrumental in developing prescribing rights for physiotherapists and podiatrists across the UK said,

“I’m delighted to be addressing the conference today on the potential of independent prescribing for physiotherapists and podiatrists to significantly transform how patients will receive faster more efficient treatments in the future.

“Physiotherapists and podiatrists being able to independently prescribe - for the first time anywhere in the world - will remove bureaucracy, free up time for doctors and save money for the health service.”

The development of independent prescribing for physiotherapists and podiatrists is particularly welcome at the moment given the significant changes to the delivery of health services being taken forward under the Transforming Your Care programme in Northern Ireland.

Professor Middleton commented further,

“This innovation is entirely consistent with the aims and objectives of Transforming Your Care and will ensure that patients are able to access the right care, at the right time in the right location.”

Ends

For further information please contact:

Tom Sullivan (Policy Officer) Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, Arthur House, 41 Arthur Street, Belfast BT1 4GB, Telephone 028 90446249, Mobile 07779651939, email sullivant@csp.org.uk

 

Notes to editors

1. The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy is the UK’s professional, educational and trade union body. We have more than 52,000 members, including chartered physiotherapists, physiotherapy students and support workers.

2. The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and the College of Podiatry have organised a conference for the 29th of April, at the University of Ulster, Jordanstown entitled, “Patient Centred Prescribing”. Details of the conference can be found at the following location:- http://www.csp.org.uk/nations-regions/northern-ireland

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