REGULATION AND EDUCATIONAL STANDARDS
The practice of Manual Osteopathy in Manitoba is currently not recognized as a regulated health profession. However, most MOA members have pursued additional training in order to provide manual osteopathic therapy (which falls into Type 2 training according to the WHO standards) and are therefore either already regulated health care professionals, such as medical doctors, chiropractors or physiotherapists or they are registered practitioners (of currently unregulated professions) such as massage therapists, kinesiologists or athletic therapists. Some of our members are currently studying in Europe, where the practice of osteopathic manual practitioners is regulated and permits the title “osteopath” with the designation “DO”, however, in Manitoba they must comply with our requirements of using “Osteopathic Manual Practitioner” exclusively.
The designation of “DO” (Doctor of Osteopathy) is reserved for American trained osteopathic physicians. Our members must refrain from using the name “Osteopath” or the designation “DO” when communicating with patients or the public in any way. A breech of this rule will result in the termination of membership with the assocation.
Our members are permitted and encouraged to refer to themselves as “Osteopathic Manual Practitioner” and they are permitted to use the designation “DOMP” (Diploma in Osteopathic Manual Practice”).
The World Health Organization (WHO) published its benchmarks of osteopathic training in 2010. This recommendation for standards of osteopathic training is now globally considered a standard requirement for the training of osteopathic practitioners. It contains a level of adequate knowledge, skills and awareness of indications and contraindications for a safe practice, protecting the patient and the practitioner at the same time.
The WHO classifies two levels of osteopathic training – Type 1 for individuals without prior health education, and Type 2 for those with prior health education. The Type 1 recommendation for training includes a 4200 hour program which includes 1000 hours of hands-on training (“via direct contact”) in class or in clinic. Type 2 education accepts less than 4200 hours (typically around 1000 hours) but still demands 1000 hours of hands-on training in class or in clinic.
The Manitoba Osteopathic Association therefore aligns its education standards with the WHO recommendations for training of Osteopathic Manual Practitioners. All applicants must fulfill these criteria in order to be accepted as MOA-members:
TYPE 1: No prior health education and min. 4200 hrs of study and proof of 1000 hrs. of practical training (hands-on)
TYPE 2: Prior health education and min. 2000 hrs of study and proof of 1000 hrs. of practical training (hands-on)