Caregiving and dementia/Topics/Allied health

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DTSC logosymbol.jpg This page describes a Dementia Training Study Centre National Priority Area.
Allied health

This NPA focuses on caring for people with dementia through the allied health disciplines.

What is Allied Health[edit | edit source]

The role of Allied Health (AH) professionals in the care and support of people with dementia and their families is a significant one. AH professionals constitute approximately 18% of the total health workforce; a similar proportion to medical practitioners. [1] However definitions of Allied Health vary, as do groupings of the professions it comprises, and methods of classification [2] Historically AH tended to be defined in terms of exclusion (i.e. any health profession not medical, nursing or dental) but as the range and number of health professions continues to grow AH is now more often described in terms of inclusion[3] [4] [5]. Inclusion is based on a set of key attributes required to be considered an AH profession such as: an appropriate university degree qualification; registration, accreditation or professional association membership; and, a practitioner role that involves restoring and maintaining optimal function[6][7]

Allied Health as a priority for DTSC[edit | edit source]

As a priority area for QLD DTSC a small number of AH professions were selected as a specific focus. They include Occupational Therapy, Diversional Therapy, Social Work and now Psychology. These professions though not all universally recognised or acknowledged as AH are some of those most likely to be involved in the care of people with dementia in acute care, community and residential care settings.

In 2012, the QLD DTSC conducted a national survey to identify the key dementia education and training needs of Diversional Therapists, Occupational Therapists and Social Workers. Results summaries for each profession are available on the new Allied Health resource page in the DTSC website. The survey results were also presented as a poster at the Dementia Collaborative Research Centres Forum in Brisbane in 2013.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2010. Australia’s health 2010. Australia’s health series no. 12. Cat. no. AUS 122. Canberra: AIHW.
  2. Australian Health Workforce Advisory Committee – The Australian Allied Health Workforce - An Overview of Workforce Planning Issues, AHWAC Report 2006.1, Page 14. http://www.ahwo.gov.au/documents/Publications/2006/The%20Australian%20allied%20health%20workforce.pdf
  3. Australian Health Workforce Advisory Committee – The Australian Allied Health Workforce - An Overview of Workforce Planning Issues, AHWAC Report 2006.1, Page 14. http://www.ahwo.gov.au/documents/Publications/2006/The%20Australian%20allied%20health%20workforce.pdf
  4. Lowe S, Adams R, O'Kane A. A framework for the categorization of the Australian Health Workforce – a discussion paper. Canberra, ACT: SARRAH; 2007.
  5. Allied Health Professions Australia, Definition of Allied Health, 2012. Available at: http://www.ahpa.com.au/Home/AboutAlliedHealth.aspx, accessed 20/1/2014
  6. Allied Health Professions Australia, Definition of Allied Health, 2012. Available at: http://www.ahpa.com.au/Home/AboutAlliedHealth.aspx, accessed 20/1/2014
  7. The Allied & Complementary Health Professions and National Registration; A discussion paper. February 2011 Services for Australian Rural and Remote Allied Health, Canberra Available at http://www.sarrah.org.au/site/index.cfm?display=65820 Accessed 30/1/2014