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The Board of the Gibraltar Health Authority (GHA) last week ratified the previously approved policy on the use of acupuncture as a modality (method) of treatment for GHA patients.

In April and May last year, ten Members of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and one General Practitioner were trained in MSK (Musculoskeletal) Western Acupuncture through the GHA School of Health Studies, following management approval of the training. The Senior Lecturer and Chairman of the Association of Acupuncture for Chartered Physiotherapists delivered the training in Gibraltar with the portfolios of learning completed in the summer leading to full accreditation in the use of Acupuncture as a modality In September 2015. This treatment modality is research based and provides Chartered Physiotherapists with an added tool with which to treat patients with Musculoskeletal conditions.

All attending professionals are members of their UK professional bodies in addition to being fully registered with both the UK Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and/or the Gibraltar Medical Registration Board (MRB), as well as being registered with the MRB.

GHA Physiotherapists are therefore fully trained, competent, registered and working within the scope of practice for their profession in the delivery of Acupuncture as a treatment which provides full insurance for their practice both through the GHA and their professional bodies.

Now that the Policy has been formally ratified for treatment of Low Back Pain, the more extensive MSK Acupuncture Policy, for which the team is also qualified, will follow closely.

Minister for Health Dr John Cortes, in welcoming the development, commented, “I am really pleased, and proud of the physiotherapy team’s initiative in seeing the advent of acupuncture as a modality of treatment in Gibraltar through from inception to practice. They are a group of professionals whose contribution to the care of patients is often overlooked, but is absolutely vital. The use of acupuncture under their expertise will greatly benefit those who we care for.”