The World Confederation for Physical Therapy (WCPT) advocates that private practice is a right of physical therapists worldwide. Physical therapists as autonomous practitioners should be allowed to engage in private practice, free of restrictions imposed by other professions on how they should practise. 1 Physical therapists in private practice should deliver services to patients/clients within their scope of practice in accordance with national/state/provincial government laws, rules and/or regulations and in accordance with WCPT policies and guidelines.
In keeping with WCPT’s policy statement on standards, it is expected that physical therapists in private practice apply best practice principles in their professional and business/administrative arrangements, in the same way that they do in their clinical practice. 2
In accordance with WCPT’s ethical principles all business relationships shall be free of avoidable conflicts of interest and ensure the integrity of professional conduct. 3
WCPT believes that physical therapists in private practice should receive just and equitable remuneration for their services. WCPT encourages its member organisations to support physical therapists in private practice to achieve this remuneration and, where appropriate, negotiate on their behalf with funders. Further, a physical therapist’s practice ownership should be recognised and reflect the full extent of their investment commitment in the practice and any risk associated with the commitment.
Scope of practice — is a statement describing physical therapy within the context of the regulatory environment and the evidence base for practice within a jurisdiction. Scopes of practice are dynamic and evolving in accordance with changes in the evidence base, policy and needs of service users. WCPT describes the parameters of a physical therapist’s scope of practice in its description of physical therapy and member organisations set out the agreed scope of practice in their countries. 4
- Advanced scope of practice — physical therapists may develop a scope of practice beyond the usual and customary physical therapist’s practice as a result of attaining significant additional education, professional experience, and/or enhanced competencies. Specialisation is an example of advanced scope of practice. 5
|Approval, review and related policy information|
First adopted at the 13th General Meeting of WCPT June 1995.
Revised and re-adopted at the 16th General Meeting of WCPT June 2007.
Revised and re-adopted at the 17th General Meeting of WCPT June 2011.
Revised and re-adopted at the 18th General Meeting of WCPT May 2015.
|Date for review:||2019|
|Related WCPT Policies:||
WCPT policy statement:
- World Confederation for Physical Therapy. Policy statement: Autonomy. London, UK: WCPT; 2017. www.wcpt.org/policy/ps-autonomy (Access date 10th March 2017)
- World Confederation for Physical Therapy. Policy statement: Standards of physical therapist practice. London, UK: WCPT; 2017. www.wcpt.org/policy/ps-standards (Access date 10th March 2017)
- World Confederation for Physical Therapy. Policy statement: Ethical responsibilities of physical therapists and WCPT members. London, UK: WCPT; 2017. www.wcpt.org/policy/ps-ethical-responsibilities (Access date 10th March 2017)
- World Confederation for Physical Therapy. Policy statement: Description of physical therapy. London, UK: WCPT; 2017. www.wcpt.org/policy/ps-descriptionPT (Access date 10th March 2017)
- World Confederation for Physical Therapy. Policy statement: Physical therapist practice specialisation. London, UK: WCPT; 2017. www.wcpt.org/policy/ps-specialisation (Access date 10th March 2017)
American Physical Therapy Association
- Impact: newsletter of the private practice section with archive of articles
- Institute of private practice physical therapy: mission is to foster understanding, learning, research and related projects to advance private practice physical therapy
- Opening a private practice presentation
Australia Physiotherapy Association
- InPractice 2025 report - commissioned to look at the strategic drivers that will shape the health industry in the coming decades and the key ingredients that private physical therapy businesses must incorporate to thrive in the future.
- APA standards for physiotherapy practices
Canadian Physiotherapy Association
The private practice division has a toolbox of information covering:
- Benchmarking & strategic planning
- Business & practice management
- Human resources
- Legal and finance
- Marketing and branding
© World Confederation for Physical Therapy 2017