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First Contact Practitioners
The role of First Contact Physiotherapists (FCPs) in Primary Care is to assess patients with soft tissue, muscle and joint pain and to decide on the most appropriate management pathway. FCPs are physiotherapists with expertise in the assessment and management of Musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions.
Examples of the conditions a FCP can see are:
- all soft tissue injuries
- sprains, strains or sports injuries
- arthritis – any joint
- possible problems with muscles, ligaments, tendons or bone, e.g. tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, ankle sprains
- Spinal pain including lower back pain, mid-back pain and neck pain
- Spinal-related pain in arms or legs, including nerve symptoms, e.g. pins and needles or numbness
- Post-orthopaedic surgery
The FCP may give advice or exercises, refer on for further physiotherapy treatment, request investigations or refer to a specialist if indicated.