MBS items for subsidised allied health services in Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACFs)
The Government acknowledges that many residents have been affected physically and/or mentally by COVID-19 restrictions. In addition, a number of residents have contracted and survived COVID-19, who require rehabilitation to restore function and mobility.
The focus of the new items is mental health and physical functioning. RACF residents are at high risk of deconditioning, as COVID restrictions have caused inactivity. Prolonged periods of inactivity can reduce muscle strength by 2 to 5 percent per day, increasing the risk of falls. In addition, a number of residents have not had their usual activities or visitors as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic which has led to more isolation, and a higher risk of mental health issues.
New temporary MBS items are available to support RACF residents’ mental and physical health, especially those who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Allied health services offer many benefits to aged care residents
Allied health professionals provide a broad range of diagnostic, technical, therapeutic and direct health services across a wide range of professions. Allied health professionals can provide a diverse range of interventions that can improve the health of aged care residents and assist their quality of life through improving mobility and physical function, encouraging independence, and enhancing wellbeing.
Allied health professionals can:
- increase the focus on preventative and early interventions
- assist and support the maintenance and management
- provide a range of therapies to RACF residents to support their reablement and rehabilitation
- provide a range of psychosocial and psychological interventions
- In addition to those services listed above, allied health professionals are uniquely skilled to assist people with dementia