Plans to introduce affiliate members

CSP Council last month agreed to pursue changes to a bye-law that will introduce a new category of ‘affiliate membership’.

The title would be used for graduates from non-CSP accredited courses and physiotherapists who have qualified overseas and gained Health Professions Council registration in the UK. The amendments, which were unanimously carried, will mean that any graduate qualifying from a non-CSP recognised course from June 2011 would be able to achieve chartered physiotherapist status by a post-qualification continuing professional development route, expected to take up to a year. This would also be the required route for overseas-qualified physiotherapists who achieve HPC registration and then wish to join the CSP. Graduates from the Republic of Ireland are exempted from this requirement, however. The changes follow a Council decision in June 2007. Until recently only two UK universities did not have CSP recognition for their courses as a result of the 2007 changes. However, after discussions with the Society, Nottingham is now to become part of the new CSP accreditation procedures, and talks are continuing with Liverpool over the issue. The bye-law changes and the new category of affiliated member will only apply to the September 2008 cohort, graduating in 2011, and to any subsequent intakes. The CSP exempted earlier cohorts of graduates to give the universities time to notify their new students formally that the Society no longer recognised the course and that graduates would not have the right to apply for full chartered physiotherapist status on initial qualification. CSP chief executive Phil Gray said: ‘If we find that all the universities are on board by 2011 we may want to include overseas physiotherapists as affiliated members, but we don’t have to make that decision now.’ Council also agreed that any minor wording or numbering changes that achieve the same result could be made following discussion with the government or legal advisers without having to return to Council. The bye-law amendments will get a second reading by Council in September, before being proposed at the annual general meeting at Congress in October and finally going before the Privy Council for approval. 
Louise Hunt

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