The Daily Chronic
Page 3 | November 2014
An example of this was when I worked at a clinic with a new graduate of the British School of Osteopathy. She was completely unable to perform a lumbar role (the one where the patient is in a position similar to the recovery position). To say this technique is a mainstay of osteopathy is an understatement. I spent a whole day with her teaching her not only the immensely valuable lumbar role, but also many basic manipulations that should have been covered by year 2 and perfected by exam time! I was shocked to say the least. I have also taught and continue to teach many other “modern trained” osteopaths vitally important techniques that are needed on a daily basis to help their patients get well quickly and effectively. What on earth is going on in the schools?? From what I have seen, the schools seem to concentrate a lot on theory and health and safety. This goes hand in hand with the types of osteopaths who run the General Osteopathic
Council. In other words, these “grey suits” of Osteopathy are far better at political positions than treating patients so they hoist their love of the theory of osteopathy onto the school curriculums rather than giving the students the manual skills they need to become outstanding practitioners and get their patients out of pain, which lets be frank about this, is what we are trained for and what the patient pays for. Whilst interviewing osteopaths for The Back and Joint Pain Centre in Caterham (my clinic) out of around 30 that I interviewed only three were what I called good at actual treatments. Isn’t that a bad reflection on a once great profession? When I taught osteopaths in the 1990’s, I would have had any of our graduates working for me quite happily. We made sure our graduates came out of college as excellent practitioners able to do what their patients had paid them to do. I consider our clinic lucky to have found Usman Kasser who is a real natural at osteopathy, but is a rarity in this day and age. From what I hear, the same is happening to chiropractic, the modern ones scarcely able to treat a patient effectively. It is a sad state of affairs for which we have the General Osteopathic Council to thank as well as their Chiropractic counterparts. It is as if osteopathy and chiropractic are both heading towards the useless mess that physiotherapists have been forced into where no actual hands on work is done anymore, just exercise sheets handed out over and over. Very frustrating for the physiotherapists themselves. Forgive me for possibly sounding like a conspiracy theorist, but it seems as if the regulatory bodies are trying to push the practitioners of these great therapies into a state where they are so ineffective at what they do that within two generations three
professions will become extinct. Osteopathy was so much better when the osteopaths were split into different associations where all competed to turn out better osteopaths than the other. CPD courses concentrated on the subjects that made for better osteopaths, for example one course may have concentrated on new methods of pelvis adjustments. CPD is now forced on osteopaths and from what I hear is mainly theory based and practitioners attend because they have to and waste a perfectly good weekend, and a lot of money! My own answer to this would be that all the osteopaths should vacate the General Osteopathic Council and bankrupt it and then go back to how we were, the vibrant forward thinking and innovative profession, we should be. Kick out the grey suits and get this lovely profession more patient care based again. Get the colleges teaching real osteopathy once more and turn out practitioners the profession can be proud of and who will pass the skills onto generation after generation. What is happening now is killing the profession of osteopathy; will osteopaths take a stand against the General Osteopathic Council? I sadly doubt it. The General Osteopathic Council rule by fear; speak out and you get suspended from practice, you lose your livelihood and your home. The grey suits have the law on their side and will abuse this at any given opportunity to flex their muscle and bully their members and ex-members. These people only care about the politics of osteopathy, and the power of their positions not the patient’s wellbeing. I am sure Andrew Taylor Still, osteopathy’s founder, would turn in his grave at the people running osteopathy in the UK today.
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