Approved Minutes Edu WG Hamburg 2017


Approved Minutes of the

Education Working Group Meeting

2nd – 4th February 2017, in Hamburg, Germany




            Chairman:                            Esther-Mary D'Arcy (EMdA)

Helen French (HF)

           Silke Gruber (SG)

Charlotte Häger (CH)

Claudia Kemper (CK)

Nikolaos Strimpakos (NS)

Carmen Suarez (CS)


            General Secretary:            David Gorría



Agenda Point No. 1.  Welcome


The Chairman, Esther-Mary D’Arcy, welcomed all members to the second meeting of the 2016-2018 period in Hamburg, Germany.


The Chairman particularly thanked the Deutscher Verband für Physiotherapie (ZVK) e. V. for hosting the Working Group’s meeting and its generous hospitality.


The draft Agenda was agreed and adopted (See Annex 1).


Agenda Point No. 2. Minutes of the last meeting held on 6 – 9 October 2016 in Bucharest, Romania


The Minutes of the last Education Matters WG meeting, held in Bucharest, Romania, on 6th-9th October 2016, were approved.


They will be sent to the members of the Working Groups, the Executive Committee and Member Organisations.


Agenda Point No. 3. Matters arising from the Minutes


No matters arising were expressed or recorded.


Agenda Point No. 4. Activities for the period 2016 – 2018 Overview of “projects”, and distribution of the activities / responsibilities


The Chairman reported that she had presented the planned timetable of future activities 2016-2018 to the Executive Committee and it had agreed the plan in general terms.

The Members agreed to update and review the draft time plan under each agenda point as appropriate, fixing deadlines, prioritising activities and having group discussions for specific actions when necessary.


The WG has to complete the initial drafts of all its documents and resources/ materials before the 3rd WG meeting and the final draft by the 4th WG meeting at the latest, in order to circulate all documents to the MOs for their revision prior to the 2018 General Meeting.



Active Points 5 – 11


Agenda Point No.5. Competencies 

5.1 To provide more detail for the MOs on the expected minimum competencies for Physiotherapist entry level (Health promotion and disease prevention through exercise and behaviour change, health systems, health workforce shortage and use of new technologies would be taken into consideration) (SO4).

5.2 To identify and define the expected minimum outcome competencies for Physiotherapist entry level.

5.3 To monitor the use of ESCO definitions to ensure alignment with physiotherapy competencies.


The Chairman thanked Carmen Suarez and Silke Gruber for the document they prepared for this meeting. The draft drew largely from three sources; Ireland, Spain and ENPHE documents which informed the discussion.



The WG members started the discussion by clarifying the aim of the document: it is an aspirational document about the minimum expected competencies for an entry level Physiotherapist who would graduate as an autonomous practitioner.


The discussion included the rationale for the document. Just as a consensus was required by MOs in defining ‘what a Physiotherapist is’, so it would be with the expected minimum competencies for an entry level Physiotherapist i.e. ‘what a Physiotherapist does’


This document is more for the profession than for the educators. What does a Physiotherapist need to be able to do in order to be employable?


The WG also noted it was important to clarify what the document is not about; it is not a framework or a limit to physiotherapy practice.

Since the purpose of the document is broader than the European Region, the WG agreed to start by reviewing the WCPT material on this topic.


Documents to be reviewed include:

  1.             WCPT guideline for physical therapist professional entry level education;
  2.           Material from the ESCO project;
  3.          ER-WCPT Standards of Practice (latest draft) and
  4.           National documents from MOs including regulatory bodies in UK & Ireland.


Document title: the suggested title is Expected Minimum Competencies for an entry level Physiotherapist.


Document type: A reference or supporting document.



  1.             To prepare the next draft and circulate to the other WG members by 15th May 2017 (CS & SG).
  2.           To provide feedback on the draft (using tracked changes) by 15th June (all other WG members).
  3.          To collate all the feedback into the next draft and send to DG for circulation by 28th August 2017 for discussion at the 3rd meeting (CS&SG).


5.3 ESCO

As agreed at the last meeting, the General Secretary contacted the EU Commission to enquire about the status of the ESCO project and specifically about the actions related to health and physiotherapy.

The following response was received;

Currently, the occupations are being translated into the 23 EU languages plus Norwegian and Icelandic and soon the knowledge, skills and competencies will also be translated. In this process, representatives of the Member States are consulted by translators to solve any potential doubts that they may have about the language used in their particular countries. We believe this dialogue is highly beneficial and in Q4 2016-Q1 2017 we will have another consultation with the Member States Working Group to present them the translations of the occupations.


In the long run, we also intend to create a virtual community of experts who could participate to the update of the classification, informing us about future trends in their field or changes required to the classification. We will keep you informed.


Actions: The WG tasked the GS to ask the Commission the following;

  1.              if the translations could be made available so that the MOs affected could proof the translation and correct where appropriate.
  2.           when will the ESCO section would be updated as agreed with the Commission.


Agenda Point No.6 – To follow up and support MOs implementation of CPD at national level and monitor EU developments. (SO2, SO3 & S04).



(Taking into account the work under development by the Education WG on issues such as specialisation, etc.), it was agreed to defer discussion on this item until the 3rd WG meeting.



  1.             To present a time plan for actions – which would take into consideration the content of the related documents (Silke Gruber and Helen French).


Nicole Muzar, Professional Issues WG member responsible for collaborating on this issue with the Education WG, will be informed about this plan for her possible comments (DG).


Agenda Point No.7 – To develop the European Vision on Specialisation for physiotherapists in which definitions, benefits and challenges of clinical specialisation are provided as well as advice on how to facilitate this process in the MOs (SO2, SO3 & S04)


The Chairman thanked Helen French for her work in preparing the next draft of this document.



This was based on the material, discussions and agreements at the last Education WG meeting and the presentation made by Helen French at the recent ER-WCPT Congress which covered:

  • What is Specialisation?
  • Benefits and challenges
  • Competencies required
  • Changing populations needs
  • Generalist vs Specialist
  • Emerging competencies
  • Moving forward


The WG Members discussed several points including:

  • Specialisation is important for recognition of skills - e.g. as an expert role for influencing national health policies
  • The need to clarify the terminology - e.g. clinical specialist, advanced practitioner, extended scope etc. - so the document will start by defining a Physiotherapist, then to the broad areas of advanced scopes (Management, Research, Education and Clinical specialisation) and then drill down further to focus on the Physiotherapist as a Clinical Specialist
  • WCPT Guidance on Specialisation and CSP advanced practice documents would be used as reference for the ER document.
  • Add practical examples - e.g. (i) Iceland – only one profession but it has up to 13 specialisations recognised with a license to practise. (ii) Ireland - has an example of a pathway to specialisation.
  • Present a list of examples of what is not specialisation and the challenges.


Document title: A European Perspective on Specialisation for Physiotherapists – Briefing paper




Specialisation will be the Education WG’s topic for the next Joint WGs’ meeting in September 2017.



  • To prepare the next draft and circulate to the other WG members by 15th May 2017 (HF, SG & CS).
  • To provide feedback on the draft (using tracked changes) by 30th May (all other WG members).
  • To collate all the feedback into the next draft and send it to DG for circulation by June 2017 for discussion at the Joint WGs meeting. (HF, SG & CS)


Agenda Point No.8 – To discuss and suggest the best sustainable methods to monitor changes and trends of Bachelor, Master and Doctoral programmes in Physiotherapy within the ER-WCPT MOs (SO3). To repeat every second period with effect from 2014.


Following discussion, it was agreed to look at the trends from 2005 to the present based on the information provided annually for the ER website database by the MOs. The information would also be crosschecked with information collected by the European Commission from the Competent Authorities of the Member States.

The comparison would focus on the changes in the entry-level programmes and their duration.



To prepare a draft for presentation and discussion at the next meeting (EMD’A & GS).


Agenda Point No.9 – To update the information on the ER-WCPT website on Quality Assurance procedures in Physiotherapy education and to consider developing a checklist for MOs activities in relation to Quality Assurance. (SO3).


Charlotte Hager and Nikolaos Strimpakos presented an updated report on Quality Assurance in Physiotherapy Education with recommendations.

CH, NS and EMD’A met on the previous day to work on the document, the discussion was based on this updated version.


The document has information gathered from the MOs in QA from surveys in 2010, 2012, 2014 (Report on Quality Assurance 2014) update in 2015, and from contacts conducted directly.  In total, responses from 36 out of 39 MOs has now been gathered and analysed.


The WG members reviewed the report and agreed some additional suggestions.



  • To contact the three MOs whose responses are still outstanding (Lithuania, Montenegro and Portugal), (GS).
  • When ready - publish the current information on the European Region website, inform the MOs about it and ask them to review the table of information and to correct and clarify if needed.
  • Look at the updated information provided by the MOs on the website in January 2018 and update the Report for the 2018 GM.


The WG members thanked Charlotte Hager and Nikolaos Strimpakos for their work.

 Agenda Point No.10 – To review and update, if needed, the Policy Statement on Physiotherapy Education of the ER-WCPT (S03).



To defer the discussion on the need to review and update the Statement until after the documents on Competencies, CPD and Specialisation are close to finalisation.

Discussion will start at the 3rd WG meeting.


 Agenda Point No.11 – To monitor the development of E-Learning in relation to Physiotherapy education and to consider if an information or policy paper is required.


As agreed at the previous meeting, and following the recommendation from the 2016 GM, the WG started to develop an information document / Briefing paper on E-Learning.


The Chairman thanked Claudia Kemper for her work to date on this topic.


CK noted that a very comprehensive WHO document on e-learning at undergraduate level already exists and it was agreed there is no need to reinvent the wheel.


Following discussion, the WG agreed on the following;

  • The scope would be from entry level to career development with applicability throughout the working life.
  • The document should support MOs, and their members, for CPD purposes, provide value for the MOs e.g. for re-registration purposes such as improving education, specialisation or career development.
  • The document will contain examples from physiotherapy and from other health care professions, which may also have applicability to physiotherapy, such as those in the WHO document.



  1. To prepare the next draft and circulate to other WG members by 15th May 2017 (CK & HF)
  2.           To provide feedback on the draft (using tracked changes) 15th June (all other WG members).
  3.          To collate all the feedback into a new draft and send to DG for circulation by 28th August 2017 for discussion at the 3rd meeting. (CK&HF)
  4.          Contact the EU Matters WG Chairman to discuss the actions on this issue as it is linked to the document on eHealth under development by the EU WG (EMD’A).


Note: (E-Learning encapsulates any form of eTool that facilitates Continuous Professional Development for physiotherapists and access to physiotherapy education programmes to students and physiotherapists). 



Active Points 12 – 14


 Agenda Point No. 12 – To review and update, if needed, the Briefing Paper ‘Promoting Research and Research Careers’ within Physiotherapy in Europe Identify trends in Physiotherapy research and common research topics across MOs (S03)


The WG discussed how to work on this recommendation from the GM and agreed to start by:

  • Reviewing, updating and revising the document;
  • Considering the scope and title of the document;
  • Adding sources – refer to Research priorities;
  • Adding, if appropriate, EU and WHO Health priorities;
  • Checking if there was a follow-up to the APTA’s research agenda 2010 and CSP’s 2012;
  • Consider removal of the sections on Careers (may be place in a separate paper);
  • Considering new reflections e.g. cultural and demographic changes affecting physiotherapy practice; and
  • Aligning “research priorities for physiotherapy” with the content of the database on Clinical Guidelines and EBP.

     (Refer also to agreed points in the Minutes of the last meeting)



  1.             To prepare the next draft and circulate to other WG members by 15th May 2017 (CH & NS).
  2.           To provide feedback on the draft (using tracked changes) by 15th June (all other WG members).
  3.          To collate all the feedback into the next draft and send to DG for circulation by 28th August 2017 for discussion at the 3rd meeting. (CH&NS)
  4.          To meet with Professional Issues WG colleagues, appointed to collaborate with the Education WG on this task; Nirit Rotem and Charlotte Chruzander, during the upcoming Joint WG meeting.


Agenda Point No.13 – To keep the information about education updated and accurate on the ER-WCPT webpage (SO3).



  • Update and revision is on-going – WG members to contribute
  • Focus on the Education Button


Agenda Point No.14 – To contribute to the ER-WCPT Congress (SO1, SO2, SO3 & S04)


Based on the information from the Executive Committee (EC) presented at the last WG meeting, MOs comments, experience from previous Congresses, and the evaluation report of the 4th European Region Congress, the documents entitled: Guidance for hosting a Congress of the European Region and Guidance to apply for hosting a Congress of the European Region have been reviewed and revised by the EC.


The final versions of both documents with an invitation for bids to host the 5th Congress in 2020 will be sent to the MOs this month.

The MOs have already been informed about the EC decision on the Congress scope, which will be in place until the next evaluation after the 2024 Congress.


The UK Report on the 4th Congress strongly recommended that all three WGs would collaborate and contribute to the ER Congress in 2020.


The WG emphasised the input it has made to past Congresses and strongly recommended to the EC that the European Region Congress should focus on Education.



Active Points 15 – 16


Agenda Point No.15 – To continue facilitating closer links and co-operation with ENPHE (SO3).


The Chairman updated the WG on the recent collaboration between both organisations, besides the session co-organised and co-chaired at the last European Region Congress on Physiotherapy Education, Practice, and Research.


The Chairman is working with the ENPHE subgroup on Direct Access – which is aimed at developing the educational needs to become a direct access professional.


As part of the ER-WCPT collaboration on this project, she participated in the last ENPHE meeting on 15-16 September 2016 in Graz, Austria (reported in the previous Minutes).


The ENPHE subgroup has analysed the findings from the workshop at the September meeting and has designed the next one to address the challenges and gaps identified in the analysis. The main challenges included the absence of autonomy related competencies in the curriculum and the reticence to introduce them into the curriculum.


This next workshop will take place at the ENPHE Spring Seminar in Porto (May 13th-14th, 2017). It will also include a presentation on the evidence for Direct Access (a speaker is being sourced). EMD’A will speak on an example of a national project and outcomes in Ireland.

The Education WG Chairman will attend on behalf of the ER-WCPT also.


Agenda Point No. 16. To link with other relevant organisations related to physiotherapy education (SO3).


The GS and the Chairman will trawl for other relevant organisations related to physiotherapy education at EU level.


Agenda Point No. 17. Education WG topic for the Joint WGs meeting in Dublin, Ireland  - 22nd September 2017

Agreed: Specialisation would be the topic for discussion at the next Joint Meeting


Agenda Point No. 18 - Any other business


18.1 WCPT Congress 2017, Cape Town, South Africa

Charlotte Hager updated the meeting about the current developments for the Congress.

1651 Abstracts were received including 680 from Europe. (Brazil had the largest number of submissions). 3-5 reviewers are reviewing each Abstract.  The announcement on successful Abstracts will be made on 24th February.


18.2 ER-WCPT Congress Liverpool 2016

The Chairman sought feedback from WG members who had attended by facilitating a process evaluation.

What worked well?

What could work better?


Food and catering


More places to eat

Professional organisation

Less of a UK/CSP perspective

Time provided for discussion

Allocate more space and time for Posters and Oral presentations

Good variety of sessions – made it hard to choose



18.3 Process Evaluation of the WG Meeting (Day 1 only)


What worked well?

What could work better?

Started on time

To get consensus on idea/detail, how to do the document


Work towards Actions e.g. Education Day



Got through what we aimed to do


Covering the (5) main documents on the first day


Have a clearer idea of what we have to do


Less foggy



The Chairman suggested adding an item to the agenda on Education in general and the work recommended by the MO’s at GMs. This would include a look at the work covered by the WG in the recent past and any gaps that there might be.

Action: to prepare a matrix of the approved Education related documents for the discussion (EMD’A).


There was no other Business.


Agenda Point No. 19. Date and place of next meeting/s







Dublin, Ireland

22nd September Joint Working Groups

21st September



23rd September Separate WG meeting 9-6*



Athens Greece

2nd-3rd February 2018

1st February

General Meeting

Dublin Ireland

26th-28th April 2018

(Pre GM Workshop on 25th)

24/25th April


*The Chairman advised members that as the 3rd WG meeting would only be one day (due to the joint meeting of all WGs being on the first day) it would have to be a full working day and it would concentrate on working through the latest drafts of the four main documents (Competencies, Specialisation, E-Learning and Research Priorities).


Reminder of Dates for next Drafts



Next draft to WG Members

Feedback to Leads

Next draft to

GS for 3rd Meeting



15th May

30th May

27th August



15th June



Research Priorities








Agenda Point No. 20. Closing


The Chairman thanked all the members of the Working Group for their contributions. She also reiterated her thanks to the Deutscher Verband für Physiotherapie (ZVK) e. V. for hosting the meeting and the wonderful dinner on Friday evening and especial thanks to Claudia Kemper for organising the meeting. She thanked David Gorría for his support to the meeting and on-going work between meetings.


Pozvánka na VI. Sympozium Roboticky Asistované Rehabilitace