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What education and training do osteopaths do?

I’m looking forward to catching up with colleagues today when I go back to college to learn more about how the original osteopath Andrew Taylor Still practised osteopathy combining historical, philosophical, and clinical information to practice osteopathic manipulation.

Patients often ask me about my training. I trained at the British School of Osteopathy – now called University College of Osteopathy on Borough High Street near London Bridge. I studied for 5 years part time (and continued to work for the first 3 years, until I went full time in the final 2 years). The course was a very comprehensive one and offered me the opportunity to work in a a variety of clinical settings including a GP surgery, HIV & Aids Clinic, Old Peoples Home, and the Mother and Childrens’ clinics.

Did you know that it takes 4 or 5 years (part-time) to qualify as an Osteopath? During this time student osteopaths will complete a minimum of 1,000 supervised hours in clinic prior to graduating, as well as studying assessment, diagnostic and treatment skills, anatomy, physiology and pathology.

Once qualified as a registered osteopath we have to undertake 30 hours of continuing professional development – CPD each year. This can be formal training courses, research, or group meetings etc.

As I work alone I find that regular opportunities to catch up with colleagues a valuable way to refresh my knowledge and skills. However I also have access to over 4,000 osteopaths through various social media groups where we often discuss complex patients or ask advice for patients who have a presentation we haven’t seen previously (no names or personal detailed revealed).

In addition osteopaths work with other medical professionals (in or out of clinic) and will often either refer patients to them if appropriate or discuss possible means to help patients (with the patient’s permission of course).

If we don’t know the best way to help you we will either know where to refer you or will find a way to find you the appropriate help. #osteopathyworks

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