ASLTIP is recognised by the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists as representing self-employed members.
- ASLTIP represents its members at national level and seeks to further and protect the interests of the self-employed practitioner.
- Regular meetings are held with various representatives at RCSLT.
- ASLTIP delegates a member to observe and represent the Association at meetings of College Council
In 1989 a small group of therapists in private practice came together to form the Association of Speech and Language Therapists in Independent Practice, originally known as ASTIIP. The main aim was to provide a port of call for private practitioners and to give them support and advice. At the same time it also provided a point of contact for members of the public who wanted to contact an independent therapist. At first all the administration was done by these founder members in their spare time. As the number of members and client enquiries increased ASLTIP has taken on some part time clerical help but the responsibility for policy decisions and liaison remains with the members of the Association who have joined the executive and policy group.
ASLTIP's membership has been growing rapidly. The membership fees fund the clerical support which provides a clearing house for enquiries from the public but all members should be aware that there are no guarantees that they will receive referrals from this method and should arrange their own advertising and marketing. The Association is first and foremost a support organisation still run by members. All members of the executive receive a small honorarium, they and the policy group have their expenses paid and all give up a great deal of time to provide support and advice to the rest of the membership. Another extremely important function is to respond to various initiatives from RCSLT and other bodies when these initiatives affect therapists working independently. Examples of such initiatives are the Policy Review Forum on the relationship between therapists working in different environments, (NHS, charities, independently), the RCSLT accreditation procedure, HPC, various government documents on private health care.
So when you join the Association please consider giving some of your time to working for it. The executive and policy group is always grateful for new members and new ideas and the Association will only ever be as effective as the membership allow.
All members must be registered members of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists and registered with the Health Professions Council. They must also have successfully completed their post-graduate probationary year. There are two levels of membership.
Full membership will be granted to therapists who have two recent and consecutive years post graduate experience.
Restricted membership will be granted to therapists who cannot fulfil full membership criteria but:
- Have temporary registration with RCSLT and HPC, e.g. Overseas therapists
- Are registered members of RCSLT and but are without two years post graduate experience.
- Are registered members of RCSLT and HPC returning to work following a break of over five years.
Restricted membership will entitle the therapist to all of the back-up services from ASLTIP but their names will not be given to enquirers nor will they be entitled to use MASLTIP or the logo. Applications will be considered individually. Overseas members who treat only in the language in which they qualified and have temporary registration with RCSLT and HPC can be included on the database as treating in that language.
ASLTIP has a contract with an administration agency that deals with queries from members and the public. It is an answer phone only service. The agency only deals with administrative matters and will forward any business or therapeutic queries to a member of the executive committee, who will contact you as soon as possible. Most therapists have their details on the ASLTIP online database - which is accessible to the general public through this website.
Standards and Guidelines for Independent Practice
This document gives guidelines for good practice and helps members to identify minimum standards of clinical care. It provides quality assurance to the purchasers of the service.
ASLTIP deals with complaints received from colleagues and from clients and aims to offer support to its members while upholding the highest standards of patient care and professionalism within the independent sector.
The website www.helpwithtalking.com has a secure members only area. It contains contact details for the executive committee, reports from various activities, tips for members from members, queries, information from meetings and updates on the ASLTIP membership pack. It also contains archived responses to therapists' queries that have been gathered from members by email round robins.
Independent Talking Points
A regular newsletter is produced. It allows members to share news and views and keeps members in touch with developments within the organisation. Members may also advertise in ITP.
Information about members' areas of interest and professional expertise is held on a computerised database. Members may then be put in touch with one another in order to share knowledge and give and receive clinical or business advice.
Members are encouraged to form local support groups to assist their continuing professional development. Lists of members within your area are available from the ASLTIP office. Details of current local groups can be found in the members area of the website.
Annual Study Day
The AGM and study day offer opportunities for members to meet each other and discuss matters of mutual professional and business interest and to update clinical knowledge.
ASLTIP runs training days for therapists interested in independent practice.See courses.
Details of all members are kept updated and lists are available to members and clients on request.
Clients who contact the ASLTIP helpline for details of independent practitioners are mailed lists of therapists either within their area or who have the required expertise that the client is seeking.
All clients who contact RCSLT for advice on independent practitioners will also be given the ASLTIP telephone number and the website details.
The ASLTIP telephone number is also held by relevant societies, associations and self-help groups (e.g. Speakability, Communications Forum, ICAN, The Stroke Association, British Stammering Association etc.) Details are also held by many NHS departments.
All full members are on the database on this site so that clients can search for and contact them directly. Members are able to update some of their details themselves and change their availability status. There is also the opportunity to write 100 words about your practice and to chose a central postcode to the area you cover.
Starting Up in Independent Practice
ASLTIP offers advice on starting up in practice. Members can contact members of the executive committee for personal advice. If your query cannot be answered directly you can often be put in touch with someone who can help.
Setting-up courses are run by members of the association and information about the next course can be found on the website, see courses .
Advice can be given on keeping accounts and contracting for services.
Advertising and Marketing
The Advertising and Marketing Guidelines which have been endorsed by RCSLT are available to provide guidance on acceptable ways to market your practice. A logo is available for use by members to show that they belong to a nationally recognised organisation.
New Members Information
On joining ASLTIP, you will have access to the Members only area of the website. You will find invaluable information for practising independently. Therapists experienced in running their own practices have compiled the information.
Tel 01494 488306 (Answer phone)
Fax 01494 488590
The office can only deal with administrative matters; queries of a professional or business nature should be directed to the committee. If you want to speak to a member of the committee, contact details can be found on the newsletter, in the members area of the website or the office can forward your query. As members of the committee are all working therapists, it may take a little time before they can respond to you.
Current Subscriptions (subject to annual review)
Initial joining fee £150.00
If you would like to join ASLTIP Click here to fill in the online form and then send a copy of a photocopy of your current RCSLT membership card showing the expiry date and a photocopy of your HCPC registration document with your cheque (payable to ASLTIP) to:
Coleheath Bottom, Speen, Princes Risborough
Bucks HP27 0SZ