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Innovation Grant for British School of Osteopathy

When finances and funding sit so firmly at the heart of the NHS it can sometimes seem as though every attempt to instil a culture of care is beset by financial restrictions.  Not that care and compassion should be affected by finances but it can be hard to provide a quality service when time and energy is spent in scratching around for cash.

It is therefore good to be able to report on the British School of Osteopathy which has recently been awarded a significant innovation grant.  Totalling just over £250,000 spread over a three year period the grant will enable the BSO to develop a new service called OsteoMAP.

According to the BSO website, “OsteoMAP is designed to support people with long-term musculoskeletal pain, which may be alleviated but is unlikely to be completely resolved by manual therapy alone.”  The programme will initially be developed at the BSO’s clinical centre and then rolled out via training courses to students and qualified osteopaths across the UK.

In recognising and developing multi-layered treatments which address the physical and psychological effects of certain conditions this programme should both reduce the burden on hospital services and help the health services to deliver the Government’s aim of a more patient focused treatment regime.

One of the side-effects of this programme is that community osteopaths are likely to become more involved in the treatment of long term conditions and this could add to the patient mix.  Those osteopaths who have switched to a more streamlined appointment, diary management and patient notes system may be in the best position to take advantage of this increased treatment requirement.

In effect, the more time which is freed up from administration the better.  With phone calls answered by a virtual receptionist the osteopath or other health professional can concentrate on providing distraction-free quality care to their patients.  And when it comes to a treatment such as osteopathy or physiotherapy, the less distraction the better.  Interrupted treatments can not only be less effective, the very fact of an interruption can cause anxiety in patients leading to muscle tension.

Grants such as that announced by the British School of Osteopathy can only help to drive forward quality care in our health service.  Targeted, patient-focused and aimed at providing long term therapies for lifelong conditions; treatment regimes such as OsteoMAP will reduce the day to day burden on hospitals and enable people to live a better quality of life.

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