Ms Mary Chapman
Chair, General Chiropractic Council
Sent by email
Dear Ms Chapman,
COVID-19: GCC Support for Chiropractors
We wish to raise our concerns around the future of our profession and the impact on patient safety and access to regulated care should concessions not be made by the GCC through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19.
I am proud that the BCA membership has actively supported and endorsed the Government’s approach to this pandemic. We advised members on Tuesday 24th March to cease ‘face to face’ appointments in private practice, as we felt this was incompatible with strong Government advice on staying at home, minimising travel to specific places only and social distancing. The BCA represents the majority of chiropractors in the UK and takes our representative role very seriously. We feel that by advising members to practise via remote links and encouraging them to volunteer their significant healthcare competency to both the NHS Rapid Response and the NHS Volunteer Responder teams, we are acting with the social responsibility which the Government is calling for.
As an organisation, the British Chiropractic Association is doing all it can to implement a ‘lean running’ plan, which will enable us to help our members with their fees. We are hoping to reach an agreement with our Insurers to allow for a two-month deferment which should help members with initial cash flow concerns. Additionally, we are planning on reducing our association fees in the near future.
There is understandably, considerable distress about GCC fees and our members are reporting additional worry and prospective hardship with regards to paying their bills now. I would ask you to do your very best to put our case to the appropriate authorities, such that there is GCC fee relief for the remainder of the year. This is not about the GCC cutting its costs (which is not for us to invite) but for the Government to support our members by taking financial pressure off them via you. By having their fees collected annually, our members have suffered the cashflow penalties of a system which now needs to be made more flexible, in these unprecedented circumstances. Beyond this year, our members would need further relief by deferring or reducing payments, perhaps in concert with a monthly payment system to ease the pressure.
The Chancellor has said that he will do ‘Whatever it Takes’ to help the UK through this crisis and I strongly urge you to consider the great threat that this unprecedented and unforeseen financial hardship places on our members, your Registrants. We respectfully ask that you now take our concerns upwards to the PSA and Privy Council and seek fee relief for BCA members over this period of severe curtailment of income.
President, British Chiropractic Association
cc: The Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP, The Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, The Rt Hon Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, Mr Alan Clamp (PSA CEO)