The MS Trust, MND Association, Parkinson's UK and TiMS (Therapists in MS) have joined together, in consultation with other allied health professionals (AHPs), to develop a competency framework for progressive neurological conditions.
The resource aims to recognise the activities and responsibilities of allied health professionals when working with patients with progressive neurological conditions and has additional sections which focus specifically on Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and motor neurone disease.
The framework covers dietetics, physiotherapy, speech and language and occupational therapy - provides a standard list of the knowledge and skills required within each level of practice and each profession. It sets out a clear career progression pathway.
It aims to:
- promote greater consistency in allied health professional services for people with progressive neurological conditions
- create a list of competencies, approved by relevant professional bodies, that support practitioners to achieve and maintain high quality, safe and effective care to people with progressive
The desired outcomes from the use of these competencies are increased practitioner confidence within their practice, improved knowledge about specialist AHP neurology roles along with an appreciation of their importance, and how the most effective team can be constructed through judicious use of the appropriate staffing levels and their associated skills.
On behalf of TiMS, Wendy Hendrie said "These competencies, along with the skills and knowledge framework for MS written by the TiMS Working Group, will provide therapists at all stages of their careers with a way of evaluating their levels of skills and knowledge. Without them it is difficult for AHPs to know what it is they don't know. These competencies should help AHPs to identify the gaps in their knowledge and go some way towards standardising the care that people with progressive neurological conditions receive from therapists. Therapists across the UK are keen to have these competencies and they will be extremely useful to clinicians, managers and commissioners".