Research and Practice

OON Osteopathy Treatment
dorsal manipulation

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) provides national guidance and advice to improve health and social care[1]. Since 1999 it has been responsible for producing the gold standard of evidence-based guidance to healthcare providers in both NHS services and in the private sector. On 30th November 2016 NICE published its review of the low back pain pathway. This review titled ‘Low back pain and sciatica in over 16s: Assessment and Management (NG59)[2], looked to review all the available evidence in the field of low back pain. In addition to advice on self-management, exercise and lifestyle adaptation, manual therapy techniques such as spinal manipulation, mobilization or soft tissue techniques, all frequently used by osteopaths were recommended in the guidance.

In the UK alone over 30,000 patients visit an osteopath everyday[3] with the General Osteopathic Council holding over 5000 members on its register[4]. A public opinion survey in 2006 showed that 88% of the public felt the NHS should provide osteopathic treatment, or believe that it is already doing so[5]. Despite this in 2014 only 7% of osteopaths reported having a working relationship with NHS sources[6]. The National Council for Osteopathic Research (NCOR) highlights multiple studies that identify Osteopathy as an efficacious, cost effective treatment modality for low back pain[7]. From this Osteopaths can be considered as being ideally placed to deliver NICE recommended strategies to address the widespread burden of low back pain and both patients and allied healthcare practitioners alike should have increased confidence in Osteopathy following the new NICE guidance.

The Oxford Osteopathic Network is an award winning, not for profit collaboration of Osteopaths throughout the county of Oxfordshire. Many of our members have extensive experience; hold leading teaching positions in the field and special areas of interest that may be relevant to your particular needs. Why not u se our FIND AN OSTEOPATH section to find one near you.

[1] NICE 2017

[2] Low back pain and sciatica in over 16s: assessment and management. NICE guideline [NG59] Published date: November 2016


[4] Statutory Register of Osteopaths 2017:

[5] The GoSC Public Awareness Survey (2006)

[6] iO Census 2014