Musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions are a common reason for visits to doctors’ surgeries; this is linked to old age, as well as obesity, diabetes, etc. (close to ¾ of visits from elderly patients). The presence of a physiotherapist is therefore invaluable to reduce the pressure on the GP workforce and to ensure patients have immediate access to physiotherapy, without waiting to be referred to secondary care.
The physiotherapist will meet with patients to assess, diagnose, treat or manage their conditions. They will advise and if necessary, refer for further investigation.
Physiotherapists can become First Contact Practitioners.
Benefits for the Practice
- Frees up GP appointment time
- Reduces unnecessary patient referrals
Benefits for the Patient
- Quicker assessment and diagnostic of conditions
- Advising on the management of conditions
- Helping with rehabilitation
Training & Development
A university degree is the most popular way to become a physiotherapist. A full-time degree can take three years and a part-time course will take six years. A two-year accelerated Master’s course is also an option if people aly have a relevant degree.