In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, we have created this dedicated COVID-19 section aiming to provide vital information to all members and osteopaths, based on the most current UK Government guidelines.


Update 22 July: ‘Ping’ exemptions

We have been reviewing the guidance on self-isolation exemptions should an individual be ‘pinged’ following a social contact. There is no universal exclusion policy for front line health care workers and the guidance clearly states that exemptions are only for “…circumstances where there would be a serious risk of harm to public welfare if people in critical roles are unable to go to their workplace*”.

While osteopaths are considered key health workers, we do not fall into the category of ‘critical’, where serious risk of harm to the public would ensue should we not be able to work.  You will therefore need to self-isolate if advised to do so following a social contact.

This does not apply for contact within the clinical setting where the application of recommended infection control measures and PPE mitigates self-isolation. We advise that when in the clinic you pause contact tracing on the NHS COVID-19 app on your phone (available under manage settings). We would also recommend that osteopaths consider their options to undertake regular lateral flow testing, which will also support safe practice to reduce the likelihood of transmission.

*PHE guidance: Management of staff in health and social care settings

Update: July 19 onwards

Since the Government announced its intention to relax social restrictions from 19 July onwards, we have been consulting with the relevant public bodies, counterparts in private healthcare and regulators to determine what impact this may have on operational advice for private practice osteopaths. We will be providing an update to ensure our members can continue to operate safely, while still maintaining their valued and vital services to the public.

In the meantime, please continue to use the resources provided below for the latest guidance and advice on adapting and operating your practice.


Information and guidelines pertaining to the devolved nations:


For the latest announcements from the iO visit our News Page or join Let’s Talk Osteopathy to engage in the latest conversations surrounding the osteopathic profession.    


Click on the links below to explore the relevant areas:


Frequently Asked Questions

Here you will find answers to some of the most commonly asked questions relating to osteopathic practice during the COVID-19 pandemic. The FAQ’s below are in line with current Government advice, NHS guidance and in alignment with other professional bodies for healthcare professionals operating in private practice.

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Adapting Your Practice

Here we provide guidance on how to operate your practice safely and effectively as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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COVID-19 Resource Hub

A range of resources to support your operations during the pandemic. It also includes information if you are seeking financial, legal or employment advice.

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IMPORTANT NOTE: The safety of the public and our members is of paramount importance, and the iO is following the UK Government advice on a daily basis. Any advice provided on this page is current as of the date of publishing, although such guidance may change quickly at short notice. The situation is unprecedented and there may not yet be definitive answers available in some cases. However, we will do our utmost to support our members and the profession throughout the period.

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