|Title:||Telepractice for children with complex disability: Guidelines for quality allied health services|
National Disability Insurance Scheme
|Abstract:||Telepractice has the potential to spread allied health professionals’ (AHPs’) reach further into rural Australia. There are fewer AHPs in rural and remote Australia compared to metropolitan areas. This means that children with disabilities living in rural areas may not receive the therapy services they need. Providing therapy services via telepractice could reduce these inequities and ensure that all children receive the supports they need, regardless of where they live. Telepractice guidelines in allied health rightly insist that telepractice services should be equivalent in quality to those delivered in-person (Speech Pathology Australia [SPA], 2014). Therefore, telepractice services should not simply be an option of last resort, but should be a quality option for disability services. Yet, how can AHPs ensure that their telepractice services are equivalent in quality to those they deliver in-person? As a first step towards exploring this issue, we conducted a research study funded by the auDA Foundation in 2016-17, and in partnership with Therapy Connect, a private allied health practice. We collected information about the allied health telepractice services received by four children with complex disabilities and their families living in rural or remote Australia. We found that AHPs, despite being geographically remote from children and families, could deliver services consistent with contemporary practice and supported children to achieve positive, functional outcomes. We identified the essential components of successful telepractice models needed to achieve real outcomes for children with disabilities through this and other research conducted by the Wobbly Hub Rural Research Team. Our key learnings from this research informed the development of guidelines for telepractice delivery of allied health services to children with complex disability, as summarised in this document.|
|Type of Work:||Other|
|Type of Publication:||Publisher version|
|Appears in Collections:||Project Briefs - Wobbly Hub and Double Spokes (WH&DS) project|
|Telepractice guidelines_FINAL.pdf||196.45 kB||Adobe PDF|
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