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can good policy make things worse?


Mobility is fundamental to both the quality of life for seniors and aged care funding, but physiotherapists are being dumped.

Modern rehabilitation physiotherapy worker with senior client (Image: Adobe)

This is a story about a policy issue that’s not exactly high-profile or glamorous, but which helps explain why we’re going to struggle for a long time to get a better aged care system. It’s about physiotherapy in aged care.

Physiotherapists play a crucial role in relieving pain and in improving mobility for the elderly. Potentially they’re also an important source of savings for aged care providers — more of that later.

In August, the Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) began talking about the loss of significant numbers of physios from the aged care sector. APA president Scott Willis told a Senate committee hearing into the government’s aged care bill that providers were letting about 50% of their physios go.

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