Systems to support allied health practitioners

Providing more support for allied health professionals is a three-year priority in CESPHN’s new Strategic Plan (2022-2025) within the goal of improving practice in primary health care. We are pleased to have a draft Allied Health Engagement Strategy under discussion with local practitioners and peak bodies. Feedback will help us craft the nature of engagement and supporting strategies to be undertaken in the new year. If you would like to ensure your needs are known, please spend 10 minutes responding to our online survey. We are seeking input from as diverse a range of allied health professionals as possible.

One of the systems central to our engagement plans is Healthpathways. It features in our current vision of fostering multidisciplinary teams and integrated care. Have you seen HealthPathways yet?

HealthPathways is a “best practice” and “evidence-based” system providing information by health conditions to support GPs in their care coordinator role. GPs use it and like it. It provides information to prompt their treatment decision making and service choice. The original Christchurch version of HealthPathways was written to support linkage of primary health practitioners, especially in the wake of the 2011 Earthquake. It was adopted into our Sydney region almost 9 years ago and is progressively adapted for local services. More recently, a version for South East Sydney has emerged.

If you are practicing in allied health in the CESPHN region, there are at least four good reasons to become familiar with HealthPathways:

  1. It is a trusted resource prompting GPs to consider best practice and evidence aspects of their treatment choices. Some of those choices involve referrals to AHPs.
  2. For AHPs, this is primary health equivalent of the knowledge you gain from joining ward rounds and being aware of the scope of care decisions being undertaken in different conditions.
  3. It prompts us, as AHPs, to recognize multidisciplinary relationships beyond our own professional scope of practice, to consider the diversity of our allied networks and to contemplate creating new connections based on best practice and evidence.
  4. It might prove a powerful conversation starter when nurturing professional relationships with your referral network, both GP and allied colleagues. The service information listings are an excellent starting point to consider how your practice assists public to private treatment transitions.

We at CESPHN are looking forward to a new year and the opportunity to show allied health some increase in support. It starts with your survey feedback.