There are 5,078 osteopaths on the UK Statutory Register of Osteopaths. Of these, 2,514 are male and 2,564 are female [correct as of 1 September 2015].
The majority of osteopaths are aged between 31 and 50, although the profession includes all ages between 21 and 70.
Although osteopaths practise in all corners of the United Kingdom, the greatest number are to be found in England (4,342). The rest are in Scotland (159), Wales (133), Northern Ireland (25), and outside the UK (419).
Osteopathic training and professional development
Training to be an osteopath takes 4 years full-time or 5 years part-time. There are 11 osteopathic education institutions awarding qualifications recognised by the General Osteopathic Council.
Osteopaths must complete 30 hours of Continuing Professional Development per year.
Around 30,000 people currently consult osteopaths every working day.
54% of new patients are seen within one working day after contacting the osteopath; 95% are seen within one week.
Most osteopaths work in private practice. Treatment costs vary across the UK, but typically start at between £35 to £50 for a 30-minute session.
Osteopathy remains principally a form of private healthcare with more than 80% of patients funding their own treatment.
Most major private health insurance policies provide cover for osteopathic treatment. In 2007, private health insurance accounted for 10.4% of payments for osteopathic treatment.
Public opinion surveys show that 88% of respondents feel the NHS should provide osteopathic treatment, or believe that it is already doing so.