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Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need a vet's referral for physiotherapy treatment?
Yes. The law (The Veterinary Surgeons Act) is very specific – any type of treatment on an animal which is not carried out by a vet must be referred via their Veterinary Surgeon. This includes physiotherapy. Veterinary Physiotherapists cannot treat animals without a veterinary referral. We will maintain contact with your vet to advise them of progress and inform them when treatment is completed.
How long does a physiotherapy appointment last?
This will vary, depending on the type of treatment required but typically lasts 30-45 minutes for small animals and about an hour for large animals. The first appointment will take longer as this will include an assessment and the provision of any initial treatment if required.
How many treatment sessions will my animal need?
At your first appointment the physiotherapist will assess your animal carefully. At the end of this appointment, your animal may only require an exercise programme which you can implement, or further appointments for treatment may be needed. The situation will be discussed with you and an estimate provided of how many additional treatments, if needed, will be required and over what time period. Should this change during the course of treatment, the physiotherapist will discuss this with you and advise you accordingly.
What are the typical waiting times for an appointment?
We endeavour to see your animal as quickly as possible, usually within a few days of receiving a referral. This may vary, depending on the demand for our services but our goal is always to treat animals as promptly as possible.
What should I do if I can't attend my physiotherapy appointment for any reason?
Contact us and inform us straight away. We do not charge for cancellations where we receive more than 24 hours notice, but please tell us as soon as possible and do not wait until the day before if you can inform us sooner, as we may be able to offer your appointment to another animal. You will be charged for cancellations within 24 hours.
What are the qualifications of a Chartered Physiotherapist?
Chartered Physiotherapists initially work with humans and have undergone the required training to degree level. They will have the letters 'MCSP' after their name. MCSP means that they are members of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy. Many will be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). HCPC is a statutory body established to set and maintain standards of physiotherapists and other health professionals that work in the human field.
What is an ACPAT Chartered Physiotherapist?
The Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Animal Therapy (ACPAT) is a special interest group of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy. ACPAT members work only with veterinary referral and abide by the Veterinary Surgeons Act, as amended by The Veterinary Surgery (Exemptions) Order 1962. It is illegal for anyone to offer treatment for your animal without veterinary referral.
An ACPAT Chartered Physiotherapist is a member of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and many have a postgraduate qualification in veterinary physiotherapy. The Postgraduate Diploma or Master's Degree in Veterinary Physiotherapy at the Royal Veterinary College (University of London) is an academic qualification and graduates are entitled to call themselves veterinary physiotherapists. Chartered Physiotherapists can also qualify as Veterinary Physiotherapists at the University of Western England, Hartpury College and Liverpool University.
What are your payment terms?
Payment is made after each treatment either by cheque or cash. A receipted invoice will be provided if required.
Is the cost of physiotherapy covered by animal health insurance?
Many insurance companies provide cover for physiotherapy. They will require you to obtain a veterinary referral prior to the commencement of treatment. Contact your health insurance company prior to commencing treatment to confirm what benefit is available to your animal as policies vary. They may give you an authorisation code for treatment that you will need to give to your vet or physiotherapist.
How do I go about getting a veterinary referral?
Arrange a consultation with your vet. Following examination of your animal, ask if physiotherapy is appropriate. If so, they will contact us directly or give you a referral letter to give to your Veterinary Physiotherapist, explaining the nature of the problem.