Telehealth - Allied Health


With the increasing use of telehealth, allied health professionals can use technology to provide remote care to older adults who may have difficulty accessing traditional in-person care due to mobility or transportation issues, and those who are living rurally and remote. Particularly in a palliative care setting, telehealth can reduce physically and emotionally exhausting impact of travelling for health appointments. Telehealth allows patients to receive care in the comfort of their own homes, which can reduce their stress and discomfort.

Telehealth can enable allied health professionals to connect with older adults through virtual platforms, such as video conferencing, phone calls, and messaging services and reduce waiting time for appointments. PalliAGED provides a summary of the eHealth and resources currently available to claim under the Medicare Benefits Scheme.

Here are some ways as an allied health professionals you could use telehealth to provide care to older adults receiving palliative care:

  1. Remote consultations: This can include assessments, screenings, and consultations related to physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, nutrition and dietetics as well as a range of other services.
  2. Remote monitoring: Telehealth can also enable allied health professionals to remotely monitor older adults' health conditions and track their progress. For example, physical therapists can use video conferencing to remotely observe and guide older adults through exercise routines.
  3. Education and training: Allied health professionals can use telehealth to provide older adults with education and training on various health topics, such as nutrition, exercise, and fall prevention. This can be done through virtual workshops or one-on-one sessions.
  4. Care coordination: Telehealth can also facilitate care coordination between allied health professionals and other healthcare providers, such as primary care physicians and specialists. This can improve communication and collaboration, leading to better health outcomes for older adults.

Allied health professionals should assess each patient's individual needs and preferences before implementing telehealth as a care option.

Allied Health Professions Australia (AHPA) Telehealth Guide 

This AHPA Telehealth Guide (3MB pdf) helps to define telehealth services, legislative requirements and maintaining professional standards, as well as billing and claiming. The guide contains useful sample consent forms for videoing or recording images and a list of suitable video conferencing platforms for use in Australia.

Page updated 28 April 2023