FocalPoint study: Call for participation

20 September 2023

Persistent musculoskeletal (MSK) pain is a major health problem, and for people with MSK pain one of the things that can be beneficial is being engaged in safe, appropriate work.
When people first consult their GP with an MSK problem, they are given an initial consultation with an NHS First Contact Practitioner (FCP) - an experienced physiotherapist who is specially trained to assess and diagnose MSK conditions.

Researchers at the University of Aberdeen (UoA) are now running a new study which seeks to understand both patients’ and FCPs’ experiences of these consultations, and especially discussions about how they might support people to return to work. In particular, they are keen to understand how returning to work could be facilitated for people working in flexible employment situations, such as freelance / contract workers or those working in the ‘gig-economy’ or under a zero-hours contract.

To do this UoA researchers want to interview FCPs to investigate their experiences of supporting patients with MSK pain. These interviews will consider factors such as what helps keep people in work if they are in pain and working in ‘modern’ working conditions, and what can help support FCPs to discuss work and health with patients.

If you are a First Contact Practitioner (or have worked as a FCP within the past two years), please visit the UoA FocalPoint website for further details and to register your interest in the study.