What we're doing about allied health

We develop policies and run programs to strengthen the allied health sector in Australia. Our Chief Allied Health Officer leads our work in this field.

Our role in allied health

Allied health is a growing and dynamic field that plays an important role in the health and wellbeing of the community. The Australian Government is working to ensure that every Australian community has access to the allied health services they need.

The following areas will be important over the coming years.

National Allied Health Workforce Strategy

We are working with state and territory governments to develop a National Allied Health Workforce Strategy, as recommended in the Independent review of Australia’s regulatory settings relating to overseas health practitioners Final Report.

This strategy will:

  • help to address national allied health workforce issues, including the shortage of allied health professionals in Australia.
  • consider how these issues may vary across the sectors where allied health professionals work, to better align the supply of allied health professionals with existing and predicted need.

We will develop the strategy in two phases:

We expect to complete the strategy by early 2025.

Increasing access to services in rural and remote Australia

Australians living in rural and remote areas have less access to allied health services than those living in more built-up areas. This is due to both a shortage of allied health professionals in those areas, and poor distribution of the available workers.

We fund:

Biennial summit

The Australian and New Zealand Governments’ Chief Allied Health Officers co-convened the first Australia/New Zealand Summit on the value of allied health care. Held in August 2022, future summits will be held every 2 years.

The summit was held virtually, over 2 half days, and attracted over 950 health professionals, professional bodies, researchers, and policy makers. The 2022 theme was demonstrating the value and utility of allied health care. The summit included a series of presentations showcasing research papers and case studies as well as a facilitated panel discussion.

If you have any questions about the summit please contact us.

Watch the recordings

Read the presentations

Presentations are available on the New Zealand Ministry of Health’s Allied Health Summit web page, under the Downloads heading.

See a special illustration that was commissioned during the summit.

COVID-19

Although the majority of cases are considered mild, some COVID-19 patients might need long-term support with their rehabilitation.

Allied health professionals play a vital role in supporting their recovery. This can include physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech pathologists, psychologists, social workers and pharmacists. We will continue to support individuals who need ongoing health care and support after COVID-19 infection.

Contact your health professional if you have ongoing symptoms after recovering from COVID-19.

We run webinars on COVID-19 issues to keep the allied health sector updated on this rapidly changing situation.

Health workforce programs

We are working on a range of health workforce programs to ensure Australia has a world-class health system, supported by a highly trained, qualified and well-distributed health workforce.

Programs related to allied health include:

Chief Allied Health Officer

The role of the Chief Allied Health Officer is to raise awareness of the role and value of allied health care in Australia; build and strengthen engagement with the allied health sector; and support the development and implementation of allied health policy within the primary care sector and health system more broadly.

The Chief Allied Health Officer’s work complements the work of the Chief Medical Officer, the Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer, and the National Rural Health Commissioner.

This role supports:

Chief Allied Health Officer

We are recruiting a senior executive to fill the position of the Australian Government’s Chief Allied Health Officer.
Office of the Chief Allied Health Officer

Chief Allied Health Officer Newsletters

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