Osteopathy is now ranked as one of the fastest growing healthcare professions in Australia and it is not slowing down any time soon – why would it?
Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) statistics show that in 2017-18, the osteopathy profession grew by 7.1%. The profession now generates over $300 million for Australia’s economy every year and treats over 300,000 Australians a month. It is clear that osteopathy is on the rise.
Osteopathy Australia President, Bill Adamson, welcomed the rise saying, “The profession has grown due to the high general quality of osteopaths in Australia, the osteopathic approach to listening and caring and our ability to help people manage and understand their musculoskeletal maladies. It is also pleasing to note that women now represent 54.7% of the profession”.
Whilst representing only 0.3% of registered health practitioners in Australia, which is made up of registered health professionals such as Nurses, GPs etc, the near 2,500 strong profession continues to stake its claim and gain consumer popularity.
This growth is due to increased enrolments by students who are wanting to learn and prosper through osteopathy. The three universities teaching the course, RMIT University, Victoria University and Southern Cross University, are now collectively graduating more students each year and with higher intakes in the coming years, the profession is to set to double and more, in the next 10 years.
Despite osteopathy being on the rise, there is still a lack of knowledge about the work of osteopaths amongst the public and other health practitioners.
Osteopathy Australia, the peak association representing osteopaths in Australia, continues to promote the profession on multiple platforms to educate and inform the public. The Australian 2019 Osteopathy Awareness Week, which takes place April 14-20, in conjunction with the Osteopathic International Alliance (OIA) promotes osteopathy and tells the story of how important osteopathy’s contribution to global healthcare is and always will be.
Osteopaths are allied health professionals who offer patient-centred approaches to healthcare and functional improvement, which recognise the important link between the structure of the body and the way it functions. Osteopaths focus on how the skeleton, joints, muscles, nerves, circulation, connective tissue and internal organs function as an holistic unit.
Osteopaths use a range of approaches to enhance function, including manual therapy (mobilisation, stretching, massage and manipulation for ligaments and joints), exercise therapy and programming, equipment prescription, lifestyle advice and patient education. They determine the mix and frequency of treatment and management approaches using skilled clinical evaluation and diagnostic approaches.
In Australia, osteopaths are government registered practitioners who complete minimum four years accredited university training in anatomy, physiology, pathology, general healthcare diagnosis and osteopathic techniques. Osteopaths are primary healthcare practitioners, trained to recognise conditions that require medical referral. They are also trained to perform standard examinations of the musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, respiratory and nervous systems. Approximately, 300,000 Australians visit an osteopath each month.
For the full media release and more information please visit https://www.osteopathy.org.au/