News and Views

I.F.R – News and Views

A Note from the Chair

The word ‘research’ will often conjure up images of the cartoon type scientist – glasses on the end of his nose, hair standing on end, the laboratory full of experiments supervised by the man in a white coat. The effectiveness of Reflexology in modern research could not be further from this image but the need to move forward, to present ourselves on the scientific ladder of proof is a must for the credibility of Reflexology.

Most research               involving the therapist will require you to do nothing more and               nothing less than you currently do in your day to day treatment.               The researcher will probably need to observe you working on more               than one occasion. He/she may wish to speak with your client. There               is also the likelihood of a questionnaire for you and your client               to complete, but let’s get the fear of being involved with               research out of our minds and replace this with a positive attitude               towards involvement: “What can I do?”, “Where               can I start?”, “Who will be my supervisor?”

Let’s               get out there and prove that what we do daily is benefiting the               health of others.

The Reflexology               Forum, the developing regulations body for Reflexology is moving               forward at quite a pace. The Draft Curriculum is now in place, ready               to be distributed to a wider field of interest, for feedback.

The Website               for the Forum is up and running, the Education Committee is in place,               The Public Relations Committee is in place. There is a great effort               by all professional organisations to consolidate the process of               a self-regulatory body.

What visible               part does the I.F.R play in relation to the Forum? The I.F.R plays               a key role in the development and consolidation of the Forum, supplying               the Forum Executive Secretary and the Chair of the Public Relations               Committee. Two members sit on the Education Committee and one member               on the Regulations Committee. In other words you are represented               by the I.F.R at every level of Reflexology on every committee of               the Forum.

The I.F.R has               been advertised in a very public way through I.T.V’s “Good               Morning” television programme. A number of our therapists               appear on local radio and write articles for newspapers and magazines.               I would like all these people to come forward and let us know what               you are doing or have done in the past.

Stand back               and examine how you have promoted Reflexology, yourself and your               practice in the past month. Do you have a Website? Are you linked               to the I.F.R? Do you know a Website that should have a link to the               I.F.R’s site? By your promotion and marketing of the I.F.R               we can all benefit professionally.

With all good               wishes,


White               Paper – Regulation of Health Professionals

Below you will               find a link to the white paper published recently entitled:                              ‘Trust, Assurance & Safety – The Regulation of Health               Professionals in the 21st Century’.

Regulation               of Health Professionals in the 21st Century – White Paper

The paper sets               out how the Department of Health intends to reform and modernise the               system of professional regulation. The paper signals a move towards               a more robust regulatory system. Some of the key changes include:

  • Measures                 to make regulators more independent, such as the appointment of                 council members, professional members no longer forming the majority                 of these councils and an independent adjudicator for doctors;
  • Measures                 to ensure healthcare professionals are objectively revalidated                 throughout their career and remain up to date with clinical best                 practice;
  • The creation                 of GMC Affiliates to help deal with more cases concerning doctors                 at a local level and to ensure independent oversight of aspects                 of revalidation;
  • Changing                 the standard of proof used in fitness to practise cases from the                 criminal standard to the civil standard with a sliding scale,                 and;
  • Moving towards                 a more rehabilitative approach to regulation, with the development                 of a comprehensive strategy for prevention, treatment and rehabilitation                 services for all health professionals.

More               information on Department of Health Website


Safeguard               Vulnerable Groups Bill

The               Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Bill received Royal Assent on 8th               November 2006. The overriding aim of the new scheme will be to help               avoid harm, or risk of harm, to children and vulnerable adults.               It aims to do this by preventing those who are deemed unsuitable               to work with children and vulnerable adults from gaining access               to them through their work.

Read               about the new Vetting and Barring Scheme here              

The               Reflexology Forum U.K

It is in the               interest of all professional reflexology organisations to participate               in the Reflexology Forum, so that they can guide the development               of appropriate standards and regulatory processes. The establishment               of such standards will demonstrate that reflexologists have commonly               shared standards and values and they facilitate links to mainstream               healthcare to the benefit of clients. This encourages the growth               of the profession and raises awareness of reflexology.

Currently people               are not able to be sure whether individuals who advertise themselves               as ‘Reflexologists’ are trained to a common high standard. The range               of training available is highly variable. It varies from short courses               which equip individuals to carry out simple treatments that promote               well-being, to longer courses which provide knowledge and skills               to enable practitioners to address the management of specific symptoms               and contribute appropriately to the supportive care of individuals               with chronic conditions. Reflexology organisations that currently               accredit courses are not able to refer to the benchmark of a common               agreed standard for reflexology courses and it is therefore not               feasible for them to consult with all the other organisations. The               existence of the Reflexology Forum provides the accrediting bodies               with an expert ‘forum’ to facilitate the accreditation               of appropriate courses. As the professional role of Reflexology               develops, the existence of the Reflexology Forum will provide additional               protection to the public through the development of, for example,               appropriate complaints procedures to deal with unsatisfactory practice.

More generally,               the I.F.R also attends other conferences, meetings and training               events every year in order to keep up to date with and influence               the direction of changes in the field of reflexology.