Please note that variation of roles differs in surgeries across Mid and South Essex. Please check with your GP’s reception team to find out which roles are available for you to access.
“My name’s Jack, I’m a physiotherapist in the NHS.
Around a third of all GP appointments are due to musculoskeletal conditions such as back pain, joint pain and muscle pain.
As physiotherapists, we are experts in musculoskeletal conditions and aim to restore movement and function after injury, illness, and disability.
We are able to order diagnostic imaging and refer on to departments such as orthopaedics and rheumatology.
We aim to treat your pain holistically, focusing on the underlying cause of your pain rather than just treating the pain.
For pain such as knee pain, shoulder pain, and back pain, you’re far better off seeing a physiotherapist than your GP”.
About physiotherapists in general practice
Most of them can be dealt with effectively by a physiotherapist without any need to see the GP.
Research shows physiotherapists are the most expert professional group regarding musculoskeletal issues with the exception of orthopaedic consultants. They have the same high safety record as GPs and some are trained to administer steroid injections, order diagnostic tests including scans, and also prescribe medication.
What can physiotherapists help with?
- Diagnosing and treating muscular and joint conditions.
- Advising on how to manage your condition.
- Referrals on to specialist services.
How are GPs benefitting?
Physiotherapists help GPs to manage their workload more effectively through re-allocating appointments for patients with musculoskeletal (MSK) problems and reducing the number of MSK referrals into secondary care. This includes reduced demand on waiting times for orthopaedics, pain services, rheumatology, community physiotherapy and Clinical Musculoskeletal Assessment and Treatment services.
What are the benefits for patients?
- Quicker access to expert MSK assessment, diagnosis, treatment and advice.
- Help to prevent short-term problems becoming long-term conditions.
- Improve the patient experience.
- A shorter pathway means patients have fewer appointments to attend.
- Simpler logistics means patients are less likely to miss appointments, or to suffer administrative errors.
- Patients can gain lifestyle and physical activity advice from experts.
- Longer appointment times so patients feel listened to, cared for and reassured.
How can patients book to see or access advice from a physiotherapist?
Patients with back and joint pain, including conditions such as arthritis can see a physiotherapist by speaking to the GP practice receptionist, or by being referred by their GP.