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Protection of title
See below for highlights from our past protection of title campaigns.
Protection of title campaign: Registered physiotherapists
In 2011, we teamed up with the Football Association (FA) to undertake a media broadcast campaign promoting the importance of using registered physiotherapists. The campaign saw Gary Lewin, HCPC-registered physiotherapist to the England national football team, and Kelly Johnson, HCPC’s Director of Fitness to Practise, discuss how and why professional help can transform the recovery rates for injuries and how using a registered physiotherapist provides reassurance that they are genuine, they meet national standards and you are protected.
Protection of title campaign: Registered dietitians
In 2008, we embarked on our first joint media campaign with a professional body, the British Dietetic Association (BDA). The aim was to raise awareness of the protected title of “dietitian” and the importance of using a registered health professional. The campaign emerged from concerns about the misuse of the title dietitian by journalists and the media. Many people were not aware of the difference between a nutritionist and a dietitian.
Together, we launched a case study appeal to highlight the work of dietitians across the UK. The appeal generated a significant number of responses and unearthed some alarming and dangerous evidence of patients suffering adverse reactions to treatments recommended to them by non-dietitians. These included:
- nursery pupils put on an all-vegetarian menu that put them at risk of iron deficiency;
- a nine year old with Down’s Syndrome prescribed thyroid supplements which is only recommended for those over 12 years old; and
- a woman in her 50s with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome advised to take supplements costing £60 a month when a healthy balanced diet was all that was required to improve her health.
The case study appeal also highlighted many cases of dietitians treating patients who had previously been given bad advice; for example, following a dietitian’s intervention, a woman was prevented from having unnecessary gastric banding surgery whilst a teenager with Asperger’s Syndrome was helped to calm his impulsive and aggressive behaviour.
As a result of the campaign, we received coverage in regional and national press as well as regional radio. We also had interest from BBC’s The One Show, women’s weekly magazines Bella and Best, as well as The Sun newspaper, which ran an exclusive story featuring one of the case studies.