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Allied Health Insights Vol.2, No.18: Allied health workforce planning needs data-driven solutions

Perceptions of, and responses to allied health workforce shortages have been hampered by a lack of accurate data to drive allied health workforce decisions—this speaks to the need for a national allied health workforce strategy, something Chief Allied Health Officer Anne-Marie Boxall has been actively promoting.

At the same time, several states are leading their own allied health workforce planning initiatives. For example. NSW Health’s Workforce Planning and Talent Development, for example, has been engaged in a number of inititiatives that provide a more robust and detailed understanding of allied health workforce supply and demand.

Featured in this edition

We provide two analyses of allied health workforce planning and workforce shortages in Australia.

    • Given the rapidly changing demand for the allied health workforce, why is it that we know so little about the allied health workforce and lack the planning tools to help manage allied health supply and demand? We draw on our experience of undertaking large, state-wide environmental scans of allied health professions, we discuss the challenges of capturing data on the allied health workforce and the implications of this for allied health workforce planning.
    • For several reasons, there are few statistics available on the actual extent of allied health workforce shortages in Australia. In fact, we even lack accurate workforce supply data for most self-registered allied health professions. Drawing on our previous allied health workforce research, as well as approaches that have been used during other periods of rapid, substantial allied health workforce shortages, we propose twelve solutions that can be used to help meet the demand for the allied health workforce.

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