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During this placement, the majority of patients will be treated in out – patient clinics/ classes, within the Physiotherapy Department. Occasionally, you may accompany your supervisor to assess a patient on one of the Medical or Paediatric wards. 


It will be possible to gain experience in the assessment and treatment of patients, of all ages, referred by GPs, Consultant Rheumatologists, Paediatricians and other members of the multi-disciplinary team, with a wide range of acute and chronic inflammatory joint diseases and musculoskeletal conditions, some of which are listed below.

Physiotherapist with patient
Common Conditions
  • Septic Arthritis

  • Osteoporosis

  • Chronic Musculoskeletal problems (e.g. spinal dysfunction, cervical, thoracic, lumbar areas)

  • Upper/ lower limb dysfunctions, in conjunction with Occupational Therapy, as appropriate

Aerobic Class in Pool
Learning Opportunities

Experience may be gained:

  • Patient advice and education in self management skills, including goal setting, pacing and pain management

  • Hydrotherapy – for rheumatological conditions (when considered appropriate)

  • Assessment for and provision of suitable walking aids

  • Provision of appropriate splints/ supports for wrist/ hand/ thumb (OT provides specialised  activity and joint specific splints)

  • Progressive, graded exercise therapy inc.  gym for rehabilitation following deterioration in condition e.g. flare of RA


Experience may be gained in delivering the following classes:

  • Impact / proprioception lower limb class (weekly)

  • Chronic Low-back Pain Management class (weekly based over six sessions)

  • Ankylosing Spondylitis Gym/ Hydrotherapy class ( weekly)

Photos: Trevor Smith Photography

Learning Outcomes

On completing this placement you should be able to:

Justify and carry out an accurate and detailed subjective and physical examination for a range of simple and some more complex rheumatic conditions, affecting peripheral and spinal areas thus demonstrating the application of assessment skills, modified as needed, to investigate the level of inflammatory joint disease present and/or causes for functional impairment, using appropriate active/ passive/ manual assessment techniques. This process should include the interpretation of all available resources e.g. imaging, where appropriate.


Demonstrate the ability to plan, carry out, modify/ progress and evaluate patient centred, specific, treatment plans and rehabilitation programmes, which include an educational component, for the holistic management of patients with a rheumatic disease.


Set appropriate short and long term goals for patients with rheumatological conditions, ensuring the delivery of patient centred care and reflecting on its relationship to the psycho – social needs of the individual.


Complete concise and accurate records, including electronic and written.


Manage your time and caseload effectively, showing appropriate prioritisation skills.


Communicate effectively and appropriately,  presenting  information, verbally and in writing, with patients, carers and other professionals, particularly in the delivery of patient education


Critically evaluate the role of the multi – disciplinary team in the management of rheumatologic conditions, considering current developments (e.g. drug therapy, patient education) with particular reference to the benefits/ limitations of physiotherapy and current evidence to support this.

Day 1

Report to Physiotherapy Reception Desk, Suite 5, for 9 am on Mon morning.

Full uniform is worn (polo shirt if preferred) and university ID Badge required to be displayed at all times.

Working hours are to be agreed on contacting the department with your supervisor.

Swimwear will be required when working in the hydrotherapy pool.

Directions: Click here for directions and map of the hospital. The site is accessible via public transport.


Parking: Parking is available on site, a fee is charged for all patients, visitors and members of staff using these facilities.  On your first day please use the car parks indicated for patients/visitors and pay accordingly.  A multiple use parking pass is available to be purchased for future uses. Click here for more information.

Chesterfield Royal Hospital entrance
Guy with tablet and coffee

Photos: Chesterfield Royal Hospital

Reading List and Useful links
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