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Standards of practice

The current Osteopathic Practice Standards came into effect on 1 September 2012.

The Osteopathic Practice Standards are the standards required of osteopaths to ensure the quality of care that patients are entitled to receive and to protect patients from harm. We have also issued a pocket guide to the new standards, and the Osteopathic Practice Standards quick guide, for quick reference. When osteopaths register with us, they receive the Osteopathic Practice Standards and the Continuing Professional Development Guidelines in an osteopathic standards folder.

Osteopathic Practice Standards

Osteopathic Practice StandardsAll osteopaths are provided with a printed copy of the Osteopathic Practice Standards on registration. Further printed copies may be purchased at a cost of £2.50 each, plus £0.76 postage and packing in the UK. Postage and packing for Europe is £3.13 and for the rest of the world is £4.66.

To order copies email our communications department on info@osteopathy.org.uk or telephone 020 7357 6655 x242. If you are emailing please include your name, registration number if you are an osteopath, and the address you would like the copies posted to. We will include an invoice with your order.

A pdf of the Osteopathic Practice Standards can be downloaded by clicking on the image, above.

The Osteopathic Practice Standards are also available to download in Welsh. Mae’r Safonau Ymarfer Osteopathig ar gael yn y Gymraeg.

Obtaining consent guidance

Standard A4 of the Osteopathic Practice Standards requires an osteopath to have their patient’s valid consent before they examine or treat the patient. For the consent to be valid it must be given by a patient who has the capacity to consent.

Sometimes the osteopath may see a patient who does not have the required mental capacity to consent because of the patient’s age or illness. This guidance on obtaining consent, which is supplemental to the Osteopathic Practice Standards, explains the law in the different UK countries as it relates to:

  • examining and treating adults who may not have the capacity to consent
  • receiving consent for the examination or treatment of young people and children.

Download the guidance here:


Osteopathic Practice Standards pocket guide

OPS pocket guideThis pocket guide sets out the 37 standards, without the detailed guidance included in the full Osteopathic Practice Standards document, for easy reference. Copies were sent to all existing osteopaths in August 2012 and those registering after that date will receive a copy in their new registrant's pack. Up to 10 further copies may be ordered free of charge. For larger quantities contact us to find out about costs.

To view a pdf copy of the guide, click on the image, right.

To order copies email our communications department on info@osteopathy.org.uk and please include your name, registration number if you are an osteopath, and the address you would like the copies posted to. We will include your invoice with your order.


Osteopathic Practice Standards quick guide

You can download and print out for reference this A4 size quick guide to the 37 osteopathic practice standards.


Osteopathic standards folder

Osteopathic Standards folderWhen osteopaths register with us, they receive this folder containing copies of the Osteopathic Practice Standards, the Continuing Professional Development Guidelines and the CPD forms. Further copies may be purchased at a cost of £5.00 plus £1.92 postage and packing in the UK. Postage and packing for Europe is £2.92 and for the rest of the world is £4.15.

To order copies email our communications department on info@osteopathy.org.uk and please include your name, registration number if you are an osteopath, and the address you would like the folder posted to. We will include your invoice with your order.


Continuing Professional Development Guidelines

CPD Guidelines for Ostepaths

Osteopaths are required to do a set amount of professional development each year, in order to renew their registration. The Continuing Professional Development Guidelines contains guidance for osteopaths about our continuing professional development (CPD) scheme. For more information about our CPD scheme see the Continuing Professional Development Guidelines page.

New registrants are automatically sent a printed copy of the Continuing Professional Development Guidelines. Further printed copies may be purchased at a cost of £4.00 each plus £0.76 postage and packing in the UK. Postage and packing for Europe is £3.13 and for the rest of the world is £4.66.

To order copies email our communications department on info@osteopathy.org.uk and please include your name, registration number if you are an osteopath, and the address you would like the copies posted to. We will include your invoice with your order.

To view a copy of the guidelines, click on the image, above.