The numbers of registered physiotherapists has lagged behind demand for several years. We urgently need to expand the number of physiotherapy graduates and support healthcare support workers who are extending their scope within physiotherapy.
The CSP is lobbying all UK governments to build this into workforce planning and to support an expansion of physiotherapy education.
Pressures on budgets, rising demand and difficulties filling physiotherapy vacancies, can all contribute to physiotherapy services being over-stretched. This has implications for the quality of care, waiting times, conditions of employment for staff and demand on resources in other parts of the system.
The CSP is making the case nationally for safe and effective physiotherapy staffing levels, and supporting CSP members to influence physiotherapy staffing in their workplaces and local plans.
- Current physiotherapy workforce data
- Physiotherapy staff in the NHS in UK
- Physiotherapy staff in the NHS in England
- Staffing Evaluation System for Leaders (SESL) toolkit
- Staffing levels legislation in Wales – CSP response to the statutory guidance
- Staffing levels legislation in Scotland – CSP response to proposed legislation
The majority of the workforce today will be our workforce in 2035.
The CSP is pushing for more investment to develop the existing physiotherapy workforce – including training to work in other settings, in new roles and managing increasing complexity and co-morbidities.
Future shape of the workforce
The CSP argues that in all parts of the UK we need to expand both the registered and unregistered parts of the physiotherapy workforce and invest in the workforce to develop new roles and capabilities. Read the CSPs view on the future shape of the physiotherapy workforce.
In 2016/17 14% of the physiotherapy workforce was trained overseas – half from EU countries and half from non-EU countries and is extremely valuable.
The CSP is campaigning as part of the Cavendish Coalition for the right of EU nationals to remain and as part of the campaign for reforms to the immigration system for non-EU nationals working in the health and care systems.
The CSP is also arguing for physiotherapists and support worker to be included in the Shortage Occupation List.