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Planned Care boosts allied health clinics

27 March 2024

QEII Hospital’s Allied Health team are boosting patient throughput at the hospital’s Physiotherapy Musculoskeletal Management Clinic (PMMC) and Primary Care Occupational Therapy Hands (PCOTH) clinic thanks to the Metro South Health Planned Care initiative. 

Established in 2016, Physiotherapy Director Mark Nelson said the clinics provide conservative, non-surgical management to patients on orthopaedic outpatient waitlists.

“Often, orthopaedic patients are referred to QEII to see an orthopaedic surgeon when their condition might actually be better suited to seeing a physio or occupational therapist first. 

“By having orthopaedic patients seen in our allied health-led clinics, patients don’t have to wait as long to commence management of their conditions, which is obviously a positive thing for them,” said Mark.

Introducing a 20 per cent funding boost across PMMC and PCOTH from early March this year, Mark says the added resources will ease the pressure on orthopaedic waitlists across the region. 

“We’ve seen great outcomes from these clinics over the past eight years, and with Planned Care now enabling us to expand our services, we can take on more orthopaedic referrals at QEII, which helps reduce waitlists across Metro South.” 

This was the original vision of the Allied Health team and then-Director of Orthopaedics and current Director of Medical Services at QEII, Dr Chris Bell. 

Today, the clinic has flourished into a multidisciplinary cohort consisting of physiotherapists, dieticians, psychologists, pharmacists, occupational therapists and the orthopedic team. Nearly a decade on, Mark says the success of the clinics are in their cohesive team structure and efficiency.

“I think part of the reason our service here is so successful is because of how closely allied health and the orthopaedic team work together.”

As the clinic grows to accommodate more referrals, the wide-reaching impact of the new funding cannot be underestimated with the team rising to the challenge to future-proof the service.

“There are a lot of patients with chronic orthopaedic conditions that are appropriate for management in allied health-led clinics, so the demand is out there. 

“We’re excited about the current expansion, and about providing a tried and tested service to more orthopaedic patients in Metro South.”

Last updated 27 March 2024
Last reviewed 27 March 2024

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