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GeneralNov 9, 2020

Physio students benefit from new virtual practice placement model

A major player in the delivery of physiotherapy services across the country has found a successful way of helping students to gain the practical experiences they need during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Four staff members at Connect Health – said to be the largest independent provider of integrated community musculoskeletal (MSK) and physiotherapy services in the UK – wrote about the model for the first time earlier this month in an open access publication in BMJ Open Quality.

Photo Credit: Steven Lelham on Unsplash
Connect Health: on track in delivering a speedy and coordinated student experience

Three of them – Rory Twogood, Elly Hares and Matthew Wyatt – give the Newcastle-upon-Tyne based Connect Health as their sole affiliations – while a fourth, Andrew Cuff, also holds a position at Manchester Metropolitan University.

Tackling the backlog

The authors report that Connect Health traditionally offers practice placements to about 100 undergraduate students annually, but had been forced to cancel 10 placements in April due to the Covid-19 pandemic and resultant lockdown.

This situation – replicated elsewhere in the UK as physios switched from holding face-to-face consultations with patients to conducting virtual ones – quickly led to a backlog in student placements, they note.

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