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Musculoskeletal triage—a physiotherapist’s perspective 

Musculoskeletal triage—a physiotherapist’s perspective
Musculoskeletal triage—a physiotherapist’s perspective

Angela Clough

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date: 02 March 2021

UK patients have, for a variety of reasons, often experienced inadequate or inequitable access to musculoskeletal physiotherapy services since the inception of the National Health Service (NHS). This chapter describes initiatives taken over the last 20 years or so to enhance such access. Such initiatives began with ‘blue letter screening’ (now known as triaging), which ultimately led to the now well-established extended scope practitioner (ESP) roles for physiotherapists. The chapter takes a particular look at PhysioDirect—one model of telephone-based musculoskeletal triage. It also provides a valuable SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis of triage.

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