The physiotherapy workforce is ready to grow and help meet the challenges faced across the UK, a new review published by the CSP finds.
Drawing on a range of datasets, the review found strong potential for growth but also barriers in place that mean the UK lags behind other nations in terms of numbers of registered physiotherapists.
It also showed that despite the registered physiotherapy workforce expanding consistently for some time and the profession being attractive to potential students, the workforce is not keeping pace with demand.
The review builds a comprehensive picture of the size and diversity of the UK physiotherapy workforce and highlights that there are distinct local needs and differences across the four countries and regions.
For example, in Scotland a key proposal is for the government to make physiotherapy a controlled subject for workforce planning in higher education.
In England, a key call is for the creation of 12,000 more registered physio roles and 6,500 additional non-registered physio posts in the NHS over the next five years.
The publication of the review comes ahead of the launch in the coming weeks of a data dashboard that will provide real-time insights and analytics on the physiotherapy workforce across the UK.
The interactive tool that will be available for members to access will incorporate information about the size and distribution of the workforce.
Ash James, CSP assistant director of practice and development, said: ‘This UK-wide review is a significant piece of work that enables us to not only understand where there are gaps and resulting issues in the physiotherapy workforce, but how we all can influence and effect change.
'This review, and the soon to be published dashboard, will together provide a vital resource for members to make their case locally on what needs to be done to improve the workforce, working conditions and patient care.’
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