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New program upskills allied health professionals for regional work

A two-year education program that will create incentives for allied health professionals to work in regional areas and better equip them with the skills needed for rural practice was announced in Dubbo on Thursday 21 November.

Minister for Regional Services, Decentralisation and Local Government, Mark Coulton said the Allied Health Rural Generalist Workforce and Education Scheme will drive improvements in allied health recruitment and retention rates in the regions and provide professional development opportunities for allied health professionals.

“Allied health professionals in regional areas can be dealing with a baby one minute, and then a frail or aged person the next, so this scheme is about improving their capabilities to better deal with the varied nature of rural work,” Minister Coulton said.

“The program will boost the capability of graduates or those already working in the field, by teaching them skills on how to manage and where to find more support for complex patients, how to consult via telehealth and how they can access additional services for patients who may need it.

“A broad range of rural allied health service providers working in primary health care, aged care and disability sectors will benefit, including nutrition and dietetics, occupational therapy, pharmacy, physiotherapy, podiatry, radiography, speech pathology, psychology and social work.”

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