What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is an established, recognised system of diagnosis and treatment, with emphasis on the structural integrity of the body. It is distinctive in that it recognises that much of the pain and disability we suffer, stems from abnormalities in the function of the body structure, as well as damage caused to it

by disease.


Osteopathy uses many of the diagnostic procedures used

in conventional medical assessment and diagnosis. Its main strength however, lies in the unique way the patient is assessed from a mechanical, functional and postural standpoint, as well as the manual methods of treatment applied to suit the individual needs of the patient.

Osteopathy and patient protection

Osteopaths are trained to recognise and treat many causes

of pain. Osteopathy is an established system of diagnosis and manual treatment, which is recognised by the British Medical Association as a discrete clinical discipline.


For the last sixty years, osteopaths have worked within a system of voluntary regulation that set standards of training and practice. In 1993, osteopathy became the first major complementary

health care profession to be accorded statutory recognition under the 1993 Osteopaths Act. This has culminated in the opening of the statutory register of osteopaths by the General Osteopathic Council in May 1998. Only those practitioners able

to show they are safe and competent in the practise of osteopathy are allowed onto the register and all registered osteopaths are trained to the same highly rigorous standards.

All osteopaths must have medical malpractice insurance and follow a strict code of conduct.


Patients have the same safeguards in place when they see a registered osteopath as when they consult a doctor or dentist.


For further information contact the GosC.


General Osteopathic Council

Osteopathy House

176 Tower Bridge Road

London SE1 3LU


Tel: 020 7357 6655

Fax: 020 7357 0011

E: [email protected]