The Physiopedia Story
In 2007 the e-learning community was going mad for wiki's and it was at an e-learning conference that Rachael was inspired to build a 'Wikipedia for the physiotherapy profession'.
"Wouldn't it be great if all physiotherapists around the world were constantly creating and updating content to build one constantly evolving online textbook for our profession".
In 2008 with no particular plan Rachael and Tony set about implementing this idea as a small side project along side the e-learning work that they were doing together. The project launched quietly in January 2009 with three pages of content that Rachael had written herself. It wasn't long before universities around the world were engaging their students to contribute content to grow the resource. Now individual physiotherapists and physical therapists from all over the world take part in building this resource either informally as individuals or formally as part of a structured content contribution process.
At around the same time Rachael was looking for a way to keep up to date and continue her professional development as she took a break from clinical practice. Physiospot, a blog where she shared recently published research of clinical relevance wa the answer. Today Physiospot is Physiopedia's online magazine that shares physiotherapy news from around the world.
As the Physiopedia project grew and began to prove itself as a valuable resource for the global physiotherapy profession funding became a point of focus.
"We've proved that Physiopedia is a resource valued by our profession so we invite members of this profession to help us make it a sustainable project for the future".
Against all advice, keeping Physiopedia non-commercial and finding a sustainable way to do this that the profession was happy with was the main focus. So, through the unique combination of clinical, educational and technical skills that Rachael and Tony have, in 2014 they launched Physiopedia Plus. Physiopedia Plus is a premium content area that provides online continuing education and professional development opportunites. There are online courses, books, technique videos, quizzes, evidence updates, exercise software and much more, all wrapped up in an innovative persoanlised learning environment. The annual subscription income from this service now funds Physiopedia.
What started as a bit of fun, Physiopedia (a UK registered community interest company) is the largest physiotherapy website in the world attracting over one million visits from over 200 countries per month. It is a community driven project for our community and everyone is invited to get involved.
Improving global health through universal access to physiotherapy knowledge.
Open knowledge, open education, open qualification, open research; through global sharing and collaboration.
We strive to reach and involve every physiotherapist in the world.
Technology allows us to do amazing things! With our innovative and bespoke online platform we will have the potential to extend the Physiopedia project to physiotherapists all over the world, in resourced and less resourced, remote and accessible countries alike.
We aim to foster international collaboration to empower the global physiotherapy profession.
As a wiki, Physiopedia is perfectly suited to collaborative group authoring and can be edited by anyone with credentials in the physiotherapy community. With this opportunity we invite physiotherapists from all over the world to work together on contributing to, reviewing and continually improving the Physiopedia content.
We aspire to gather the sum of all physiotherapy knowledge and make this freely available to all.
Everyone has knowledge to share, so let's not hide it let's share it! All physiotherapists are invited to participate in this collaborative project to build a continually evolving, evidenced based knowledge resource that will be openly and freely accessible to all across the world. Through this collaborative effort we aim to be the leading independent resource for the physiotherapy profession.
We will offer educational opportunities to physiotherapists throughout the world.
For educators Physiopedia provides a platform for engaging pre and post registration students in genuine assignments to develop and share knowledge as part of a formal education programme. Clinicians can use their participation in Physiopedia as part of their ongoing professional development and educational activities. Researchers may choose to share their expertise through this open option for publication. These opportunities extend to physiotherapists throughout the world.
We aspire to improve patient care and make a positive contribution to global health.
Through developing individual professionals across the world, either by formal educational opportunities or informal independent study, Physiopedia will contribute to advancing the knowledge of these professionals which will translate into improved patient care. This is our contribution to improving global health.
We will enable promotion of the profession among the wider health care community and the public on a global scale.
Physiopedia has the opportunity to promote the value and expertise of our profession to other health care professionals and also to educate the public on how we can help them. As a knowledge resource developed by the international physiotherapy community it represents a truly global voice and so has the opportunity to do this on a global scale.
We will make a difference! We invite you to join us.
Detailed objectives are set to deliver against these goals in a strategic plan that is related to a four year period. The objectives are decided by the Board of Directors with priorities and aims incorporated from the Advisory Council, who meet twice a year, and the General Meeting, which takes place every 2 years at World Physical Therapy Congress.
Values and Guiding Principles
Physiopedia is an altruistic project that follows several guiding principles, these being:
- A non-profit project with any income being returned into supporting the mission.
- Open access information exchange will be facilitated whenever possible.
- We expect content to be clearly referenced to the best possible and most current evidence.
- Collaboration on this dynamic content is strongly encouraged.
- Perspectives from all corners of the globe are invited for this to be globally relevant.
- Promoting the profession through Physiopedia and related projects will carry great importance.
- An environment independent of any organisation will be facilitated for all physiotherapists internationally to communicate and collaborate.
- This is a volunteer driven effort, with only key executive members and administrative staff receiving remuneration.