This module promotes debate and analysis of the organisational and political context of healthcare services, and in particular, the NHS.

Background / Context
Healthcare delivery in the UK is constantly evolving in line with governmental policy, budget pressures, and societal expectations. These changes require healthcare professionals to be aware of, and understand the importance of such changes, and to develop their services accordingly. This module will look at the more recent evolution of healthcare delivery in the UK, particularly the NHS, and consider how current reforms will impact upon Physiotherapy Services. The importance of Quality Improvement, and Clinical Governance will be considered.

Module Aims
This module develops students’ understanding of the structural and political contexts in which practice takes place. Students will consider the practice of physiotherapy in relation to governmental policy, legislation and the changing needs of society, including the perspective of the service users. The impact of developments within physiotherapy and health care structures on both practice and the profession will be addressed. Against this background, students will evaluate the impact of professional, legal and ethical issues on health care provision in relation to their practice. Students will consider the role of Physiotherapy in relation to the changing context of Health care provision with emphasis on non-acute health settings. Students will also evaluate the increasing role of Physiotherapy in health promotion and education.

This module is taught over 2 days a week, for 8 consecutive weeks. Students usually attend University for classes on Tuesdays, using most Wednesdays for self-directed study, preparing group tasks, or reading around subjects looked at in class. External speakers are used to deliver sessions on Social Enterprise formation, and Business skills in the private sector. A Service User with experiences of both NHS and privately delivered healthcare is brought in to share these experiences with students.

Indicative Content
• Module launch
• NHS structural changes & Commissioning
• Professionalism and Quality of Care
• Focal groups within current legislation/policy
• Quality/Service Improvement
• The Independent sector and Social Enterprise
• Business skills in the private sector
• Healthcare settings
• Role of the Physiotherapist
• Health Education and Promotion
• Service Users perspectives

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student will be able to:

discuss the impact of developments and changing policy on the structure of health care provision and roles of physiotherapists on the nature and quality of patient care, including service improvement projects
appraise the effects of societal expectations and legal and ethical issues on health care provision in general and physiotherapy practice in particular
discuss and justify the role of the physiotherapist in patient education and health promotion
discuss and justify the role of the physiotherapist in the management of different patient groups and settings and in relation to other health care professionals and services as part of total patient care
discuss the role of the physiotherapist as an independent practitioner outside of the boundaries of the NHS.