Celebrating International Allied Health Professionals Day

14 October marks the International Allied Health Professionals Day. We celebrate the great achievements of Allied Health professionals and commemorate them for their hard work and dedication.

Allied Health professions promote emotional, physical, sensory, psychological, cognitive, social and cultural aspects for patients. At MSHS, our Departments of Audiology and Speech Pathology, Optometry, Physiotherapy and Social Work focus on patient recovery, rehabilitation, reintegration back into the community, and look at maximising people’s capacity to live well and to live independently.

Photograph of physiotherapist with patient in a wheelchairWhile Allied Health subdisciplines are stand-alone professions, they sit alongside medical clinicians and nurses as an integrated multidisciplinary team in the hospital and clinical settings. Additionally, Allied Health professionals also involve specialist fields, such as sports physiotherapy and cerebral palsy treatment in children. Allied Health professionals work closely with patients and their families by actively promoting their engagement during their recovery and rehabilitation, often acting as the link between hospital-based care and community-based care.

Photograph of carer with elderly womanThis Allied Health Professionals Day we celebrate the achievements and developments in Allied Health professions involving their established evidence bases, professional standards and education. We also acknowledge the importance of Allied Health in assisting with the management of major health and mental health areas throughout the lifespan, such as in chronic disease, ageing and disability.

Regarding the future of Allied Health, Professor Lynette Joubert and a team of leaders in Allied Health aim to develop a paper with recommendations and guidelines about strengthening the evidence base through practitioner engagement in research. On this topic, they will hold the 2021 “Research meets Practice” colloquium to promote both research for practitioners and higher degrees for Allied Health practitioners. Speaking of the event, Prof Joubert stated: "we will discuss how practitioners that study for higher degrees can take those degrees back into practice with them and also consider ways forward to strengthen practice research in Allied Health".

Allied Health Professionals day celebrates the current strong position of Allied Health in Australia and the future aspirations of its broad-reaching workforce. Safer Care Victoria presented a webinar hosted by Chief Allied Health Officer Donna Markham today and kindly featured videos of some of MSHS Allied Health staff members in the opening credits. Thanks to Rochelle Ughetti, Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology,  Laura Downie and Kwang Cham, Department of Optometry, Kate Hayward, Department of Physiotherapy, and Danielle Calder, student at the Department of Social Work, who submitted their videos to be featured. It’s great to hear from our staff members what makes Allied Health Professionals Day so important and why Allied Health is so relevant in the COVID era.

Photograph of MSHS staff from videosWe will share a recording of the webinar once it’s available. You can also view some of the videos on MDHS Twitter.