Statement on the occasion of the WHO Regional Committee for Europe, fifty-nine session Copenhagen, Denmark 14 - 17 of September 2009

On behalf of the European Region of the World Confederation for Physical Therapy (ER-WCPT) I am grateful for the opportunity to make this statement.
The World Confederation for Physical Therapy welcomes the recommendations for actions made by the meeting held in Oslo in April 2009. The World Confederation for Physical Therapy recognizes the difficulties in managing expenditure on and for health in the global economic crisis. In its Declaration of Principle WCPT advocates for the provision of primary health care that is mindful of local cultural, socio-economic and political circumstances and provides equitable access for all to effective services.  WCPT supports an approach that is flexible and innovative in providing models of service delivery that offer care/service developed in response to local needs.
Physical therapists/physiotherapists have an important role to play in primary health care as:
  • direct and indirect providers of services in accordance with legal boundaries of the profession
  • members of multi-professional teams
  • consultants to Government, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and Disabled People’s Organisations (DPOs)
  • developers, implementers and managers of services
  • educators of other health personnel and support staff
Physical therapists/physiotherapists and member organizations of WCPT are encouraged to work with Governments, NGOs and DPOs to promote and facilitate the development of primary health care and the contribution of physical therapists, encompassing the four core elements of promotion, prevention, treatment/intervention and rehabilitation.
Physical Therapists/physiotherapists are educated to practice in the area of prevention and health promotion and endorse the recommendation of the high-level Conference to ensure ‘more money for health and more health for money’. WCPT urges member states not to lose sight of the long-term value of investment in prevention and health promotion strategies and to ensure the optimal engagement of the skills and practice of physical therapists/physiotherapists in their health services.
WCPT encourages member states to seek the professional engagement of the WCPT member organization in their state in the planning and implementation of their response to the global economic crisis.