Grampians Rural Health Collaborative




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Growing your assistant workforce

Greater utilization of an assistant workforce is an important aspect of Victoria's approach to support wokforce sustainability and improve the system's capacity to meet the community's health needs into the future.

The department's approach to implementing an assistant workforce has included focusing on the trialing and implementation of allied health assistant roles (and related capacity for advanced practice opportunities for allied health practitioners)

Allied health assistants

The department in partnership with health and community services across the state, has developed a number of valuable resources to assist the uptake and support of AHA roles.

Additional resources are also available on the Department of Health website

Allied Health Assistant Implementation Program

The Allied Health Assistant Implementation Program (the program) builds on an extensive body of work undertaken by the Department of Health and Human Services to increase the uptake and utilisation of the allied health assistant workforce in Victoria.

The aim of the program is to assist health and community services to strategically position themselves to build their allied health assistant and allied health workforce capacity for the future in a sustainable way.

For further information on the Allied Health Assistant Implementation Program visit the Department of Health and Human Services website.

Stage 1 of the project was succesfully implemented in 2012/13 and targeted regional and rural health and community organisations.  A cluster model was used which required organisations to partner together for the project.  In the West Division, Grampians Region, there were 4 clusters funded including Ballarat / Central Highlands, Moorabool / Hepburn, Grampians / Pyrenees and Wimmera.  The project manager for each cluster developed an allied health workforce strategic plan and each cluster was also provided with some funding from the department to implement activities in this plan. The projects undertaken by clusters in the Grampian's Region included:

  • Northern Grampians Foot Care Project (Grampians Pyrenees cluster) - The Northern Grampians Shire (NGS) Foot Care Program was developed in collaboration between Northern Grampians Shire Council (NGSC) Aged and Disability Services, Stawell Regional Health (SRH), East Wimmera Health Service (EWHS) and the Grampians Region HACC Officer.  The primary goal of the program was to educate Direct Care Workers (DCW) to support personal care clients to care for their own feet and be able to recognise when a client should see a podiatrist.  A secondary goal was to train DCWs to provide basic foot care to low-risk clients who were able to perform basic foot care tasks independently.  The program has 3 main components: education, communication and referral processes, tools and resources.  Please refer to the NGS Foot Care Program DEC14pdf resource for further information.
  • For further information regarding the foot care program visit the Wimmera Primary Care Partnership website.
  • The Wimmera and Ballarat and District clusters implemented allied health assistant roles as part of the project.  The job descriptions developed for these roles are as follows: WWHS AHA position description 2012 and BCH Allied Health Assistant position description 2013
  • Grampians Pyrenees Cluster Allied Health Assistant Position Descriptors - The purpose of this document is to provide a resource for health services that are writing a position description for a new or extended multidisciplinary Grade 2 Allied Health Assistant (AHA) role.  The document provides a range of descriptive statements that health services can adopt, modify or extend in order to develop the selection criteria that best meets the needs of the organisation.  The document is available by clicking: Multidisciplinary AHA position description_Gramps Pyrenees DEC_14.

Update December 2016