Return to Practice #Physiotalk 26th April 8pm BST

Our next #physiotalk tweetchat is on Monday 26th April at 8pm BST. It was inspired by a tweet that asked if we were planning a chat on returning to practice and we are very grateful for the support of Paul Chapman and Natalie Matchett from Health Education England who are supporting us in developing this chat.

So – what is return to practice – or RtP for short!

During the course of your career, you may not be in practise as a physiotherapist for a period of time. This may be for many reasons, which could include parental leave, extended travel, caring responsibilities or illness. When you are ready to come back and start practicing as a physiotherapist again then the HCPC has set requirements that you must meet in order to be readmitted to the register and be safe to practice.

These requirements differ depending on how long you have been out of practice

  • 0 to 2 years out of practice – no requirements
  • 2 to 5 years out of practice – 30 days of updating
  • 5 or more years out of practice – 60 days of updating

So how do you update?

The HCPC are clear that it can be a self directed process and it can be any combination of supervised practice, formal study and private study, as long as the private study doesn’t take up more than half of your updating period. But in reality you may need support – and this is where the Health Education England RtP programme comes in, providing the help, information and support you need to return to practice.

The National HEE RtP programme has supported 120 physiotherapists since the programme began and 69 physiotherapists are signed up to the programme now and are at various stages of their RtP journey

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Typically someone on the RtP programme might have a period of supervised practice and this usually means some form of placement often within the NHS. We all know that student placements are in short supply – and finding a RtP placement can be equally a challenge. However hosting a returnee on placement can be a win – win situation as the quote below shows

‘We often have hard to fill posts, having people show an interest or being willing to think about coming back into these areas is great. We’ve always been responsive to that, and it is in our interest to help them gain the skills. Once they are back on the register, there’s a good chance they’ll apply for a job with us.’

From CSP RtP article

So join us on the 26th April to chat about the issues around returning to practice – whether you are potential returnee, undergoing a RtP journey or supporting a returnee on placement – all are welcome!

Chat questions

  • Do you understand the HCPC RtP guidance?
  • POLL: Have you or your organisation supported a Physiotherapist RtP in last 4 years?
  • POLL: Are you a physiotherapist that has returned in the last 4 years?
  • What are the main barriers to physiotherapists returning to the register?
  • What are the main barriers for organisations supporting returnees
  • POLL: Did you struggle finding supervised practice placements as part of your updating?
  • What are the benefits and qualities that physio returners bring to our services?
  • Where do you see professional body roles in supporting RtP?
  • How do we retain and grow the Returner workforce together?


CSP Frontline article on Return to Practice – Part 1

CSP Frontline article on Return to Practice – Part 2

Return to Practice Programme: Evaluation of the Allied Health Professionals and Health Care Scientists Return to Practice Programme

Missed the chat?

If you missed the chat then you can catch up with the transcript here

How to tweetchat

Take a look at our tweetchat resources

How to tweetchat

Keeping up with tweetchats


  1. I qualified in the U.K.
    I worked 10 yrs in Hkong I have been working over 22 years in france and am as we speak
    If I return to the U.K. now
    What is the situation should I wish to work in the U.K.

  2. I have completed bachelors of Physiotherapy in Bangladesh. I have been working as physiotherapist from august 2018 in Bangladesh and from May 2020 to till now in COVID dedicated hospital as respiratory Physiotherapist. Can i go to UK as physiotherapist?

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