The human bit... The title Chartered Physiotherapist is a protected title and can only be used by Human Physiotherapists who have completed a BSc Honours degree in Physiotherapy (or legal equivalent) and are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). The Health Care Professions Council is a regulatory body that regulates Physiotherapists in the UK and monitors training, professional behaviour and standards and demands active regular continuing professional development. They can strike individuals off the register for not complying with standards and prosecute individuals who call themselves Chartered Physiotherapists when they are not. You can check the register following this link: www.hcpc-uk.org
The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) is the professional, educational and trade union body for Physiotherapy. A Chartered Physiotherapist would therefore have MCSP (Member of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy) after their name. The link to the CSP website is below: www.csp.org.uk
The animal bit...To enrol and complete an ACPAT accredited MSc in Veterinary Physiotherapy you must be a practicing Chartered Physiotherapist (MCSP). The Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Animal Therapy (ACPAT) is a clinical interest group of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP). Therefore an ACPAT Chartered Physiotherapist will always be a human Physiotherapist who has upgraded via an authorized ACPAT accredited route to specialize in the treatment and rehabilitation of animals.
Unlike the title 'Veterinary Surgeon' the title 'Animal or Veterinary Physiotherapist' is not protected. This means that unfortunately anyone can call themselves an animal physiotherapist regardless of their qualifications. This is something that the CSP, ACPAT and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons are working hard to change. The title 'Chartered Physiotherapist' is protected by law and can only be used by physiotherapists who have achieved a high level of academic and practical training in all aspects of physiotherapy and are consequently qualified and registered to practice.
It is also important to note that the Veterinary Surgeons Act (1966) stipulates that animals can only be treated by a Veterinary Surgeon or someone authorized by a Veterinary Surgeon. Therefore it is a legal requirement for a Chartered Physiotherapist to gain consent from the animal’s Veterinary Surgeon prior to treatment. The ACPAT website link can be found below: www.acpat.org
Delivering specialised Physiotherapy care
to horses and dogs in the South West of England