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How can osteopaths support the development of osteopathic education?

15 February 2022

By Kabir Kareem (view more by this author)
Kabir Kareem has been GOsC’s Quality Assurance Liaison Officer since November 2018.

We encourage osteopaths interested in becoming quality assurance Visitors to make an application before 4 March. In this blog Kabir explains what it means to be a Visitor and how to apply.

During my time working at the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC) I’ve seen how the quality assurance of osteopathic education can help ensure that patient safety is prioritised by the graduates who become osteopaths. Central to this is the role of our quality assurance Visitors, who undertake initial and monitoring visits to review osteopathic education programmes.     

Last month I joined two other members of GOsC staff to speak with a number of osteopaths who have experience with, or an interest in, osteopathic education.

We explained how we use the GOsC quality assurance process to make sure the standards for osteopathic education are being met, and to ensure UK osteopathic ‘Recognised Qualifications’ are only awarded to graduates who meet the Osteopathic Practice Standards (OPS).

We also outlined how GOsC’s quality assurance of osteopathic education puts patient safety and public protection at the heart of all activities, and what the regulatory requirements for education are, as set out in The Osteopaths Act 1993.

I’ve previously taken the opportunity to visit osteopathic education providers to learn more about how they teach according to our standards. This gave me a clear understanding of how my role in quality assurance affects the quality of education that osteopathy students receive. Our quality assurance process would not work without Visitors.

Visitors gather and review evidence to show the GOsC that the courses delivered by each educational provider allow graduates to meet the OPS and practise safely. Visitors must be on the GOsC Register and must have education/quality assurance experience and the ability to work closely in a team, analysing and synthesising evidence from multiple sources to generate a written report.

We discussed this with the osteopaths and the feedback we received in response was positive although some recognised this wouldn’t be the right fit for them.

As we finalise the development of our specific Standards for Education and Training to be implemented from September 2022 (we’ll share more on these later in the year) we continue to review and reflect on our approach to quality assurance. We want to build on the open and trusting environment we hope we are already starting to create, understanding that this is key to making sure standards are met.

If you are interested in applying for a Visitor role you can email the GOsC quality assurance provider, Mott MacDonald at GOsC-Mott@mottmac.com with your CV and a clear expression of interest in the role.

Further information about the GOsC quality assurance process is available on our website.

About Kabir

Kabir Kareem has been GOsC’s Quality Assurance Liaison Officer since November 2018. He has a BA in Business and Marketing and has previously worked at the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs; the College of Policing; and the General Medical Council.