Allied Health Assistance - Draft 1

HLTAHA048 Provide allied health assistance in remote or isolated settings Draft 1.0

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Unit application and prerequisites




Provide allied health assistance in remote or isolated settings


This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to provide assistance to an allied health professional. Work includes adapting practice in response to the unique working conditions in rural and remote environments that are impacted by isolation and distance with restricted access to specialist health practitioners and services.


This unit applies to allied health assistants and should be performed under the direct, indirect or remote supervision and delegation of an Allied Health Professional (AHP).


The skills in this unit must be applied in accordance with Allied Health Assistant Framework, Commonwealth and State/Territory legislation, Australian standards and industry codes of practice.


No occupational licensing, certification or specific legislative requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication.




Allied Health Assistance




National Rural Health Alliance

"The National Rural Health Alliance welcomes the inclusion of a unit specific to the practice requirements of remote or isolated settings, given there are particular challenges to health care practice in these areas, it is increasingly difficult to attract and retain a health workforce and health outcomes are worse on many measures with increasing remoteness. We acknowledge the important supportive role of allied health assistants (AHAs) in the provision of multi-disciplinary health care in regional, rural and remote settings, noting the imperative to ensure they have consistent and ongoing access to supervising allied health professionals, as per their scope of practice. "

Clare Fitmaurice 02.07.2021 12.39PM

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Elements and performance criteria



Elements describe the essential outcomes

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

  1. Establish the impact of rural and remote context on practice.
    1. Establish the systemic impacts of location on healthcare services as a context for work.
    2. Recognise individual situations where time, distance and environmental issues may affect a person’s care.
    3. Confirm agreed methods of communication between person and delegating allied health professional.
    4. Identify gaps, benefits and limitations of health care service options and capacity for effective response.
    5. Engage with the community healthcare network to determine the interrelationships and opportunities for collaborative work practice. 
  1. Adjust practices to the rural and remote context.
    1. Address concerns with presenting person with the allied health professional.
    2. Use emerging health technologies to provide allied health services to geographically isolated people.
    3. Apply collaborative practice models, which are efficient, sustainable, flexible and customised to ensure a responsive approach to rapidly changing needs of healthcare required.
  1. Contribute to improved outcomes in rural and remote communities.





    1. Review own practice and professional isolation in the work environment and identify opportunities for professional development.
    2. Use professional and community collaboration and networking to inform practice improvements.
    3. Identify and take opportunities to empower community members to seek healthcare and participate in health initiatives.
    4. Identify symptoms of stress and professional burnout in self, peers and colleagues, and refer to services within organisational procedures and authorised scope of practice.


National Rural Health Alliance

"The National Rural Health Alliance is supportive of the focus on recognising the impact of remote location on service provision and the health worker’s experience of work and the need to address: professional and client communication strategies, professional development, collaborative practice and professional support, service improvement and re-design, community engagement and use of health technology. We encourage the addition of content regarding personal safely and cultural safely training as it relates to practice in remote or isolated settings. "

Clare Fitmaurice 02.07.2021 12.42PM

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"Acceptance and discussion of delegation and supervision need to be addressed within this unit"

Lucy WHELAN 09.06.2021 01.32PM

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1 Reply


Raffaele Quattrocchi 10.06.2021 07.37PM

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"ACPA suggests that 3.3 extends to having an awareness of free and accessible advisory services that can assist community members getting access to healthcare information and where appropriate referring community members to such services. For instance, ACPA offers an advisory service (1300 208 582) for people to receive information about advance care planning Australia wide. The advisory service is free and accessible to rural and remote communities. "

Advance Care Planning Australia 09.06.2021 07.42AM

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Foundation skills


Foundation skills essential to performance in this unit, but not explicit in the performance criteria are listed here, along with a brief context statement.



Reading skills to:

  • interpret organisational policies and procedures

Writing skills to:

  • documenting

Oral communication skills to:

  • providing information to people and allied health professional

Numeracy skills to:

  • interpreting statistical data

Learning skills to:


Problem-solving skills to:


Initiative and enterprise skills to:


Teamwork skills to:


Planning and organising skills to:


Self-management skills to:


Technology skills to:



No equivalent unit.


Companion Volume Implementation Guide


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Performance evidence


Assessment Requirements for HLTAHA048 Provide allied health assistance in rural and remote settings


Evidence of the ability to complete tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit in the context of the job role, and:

  • Work in accordance with professional codes of practice, standards, and guidelines as part of the multidisciplinary health care team in a rural and remote workplace setting, to provide interventions for at least three people as delegated by the allied health professional and:
    • provide allied health activities under distant supervision - remote service delivery
    • provide telehealth consultations for delegated allied health activities
    • demonstrate communications between the allied health professional and the person which includes:
      • phone
      • video conferencing 
  • The above activities must be performed during a period of at least 120 hours of work in a health services setting.


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Knowledge evidence


Demonstrated knowledge required to complete the tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit:

  • allied health core competencies:
    • person-centred care
    • individual therapy
    • group therapy
    • communication of person information
    • equipment and environment
  • codes of conduct for allied professions under which allied health assistant is practicing
  • organisational policies and procedures in relation to:
    • confidentiality
    • documentation
      • reporting
      • recording patient data
      • written communication to Allied Health Professional
    • professional behaviour and presentation
    • infection control practices
    • occupational health and safety
    • manual handling
    • supervisory, delegation
  • changing demands for services in rural and remote communities in Australia
  • current economic, political and socio-economic factors impacting rural and remote health care including:
    • funding arrangements including federal, State/ Territories and local government that impact availability of health services and health programs
    • expansion of scope of practice for the allied health professions
    • shortage in health workforce
    • ageing population
    • prevalence of chronic disease
    • social disadvantage
    • social determinants 
  • organisations in rural and remote areas and models of healthcare provided including:
    • Consumer Directed Care (CDC)
    • mobile health service
    • Person-Centred Care (PCC)
    • Primary Health Care (PHC)
    • tertiary level care - community or regional hospital
  • team practice models used in rural and remote contexts:
    • team ‘shared care’ approach
    • total patient care or patient focused care
  • remote considerations in the provision of care including:
    • how and when to access emergency response services
    • communication systems, equipment and methods available in remote situations
    • ways in which the care approach may be adjusted in the rural and remote context
    • availability of other community and support networks that provide interim support
    • social isolation and the scope of role of the allied health assistant to foster personal relations as support network
    • importance of establishing local networks and reputation to support the delivery of care
    • confidentiality and professional boundaries 
  • emerging health technologies, their features and how they are used and accessed:
    • Telehealth services
    • mobile health services
    • hospital in the home services
  • types of participants in a rural and remote multidisciplinary health care team and their roles.
  • organisational processes and how they may be adapted and used in rural and remote context.
  • community-based health services, public health services, social health care programs and health promotion programs
  • local and community culture including culturally appropriate healthcare delivery
  • types and benefits of communication equipment
  • principles of empowering the older person
  • principles of empowering people living with disability or serious mental illness 
  • changes related to ageing
  • concepts of holistic health and wellbeing
  • social determinants of health.
  • concepts of the medical model, the biopsychosocial models and the human rights based approach of allied health interventions
  • principles of choice and control
  • concept of reablement
  • allied health settings:
    • hospital
    • community health
    • mental health
    • disability sector
    • aged care sectors.


"ACPA suggests that the knowledge evidence extends to advance care planning. Advance care planning is consistent with person-centred care, human rights and choice. It is also referred to in AHPRA’s Shared Code of Conduct which covers allied health professions. See the final draft here: (currently under consultation). "

Advance Care Planning Australia 09.06.2021 07.40AM

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Assessment conditions


Skills must be demonstrated in the workplace or in a simulated environment. All aspects of the performance evidence must have been demonstrated using simulation prior to being demonstrated in the workplace.


Assessment must ensure: 

  • access to suitable facilities, equipment and resources that reflect real working conditions and model industry operating conditions and contingencies
  • access to individualised plans and any relevant equipment outlined in the plan
  • access to organisational policies and procedures
  • opportunities for engagement with real people accessing allied health services in rural health work.


Assessors must satisfy the Standards for Registered Training Organisations requirements for assessors and be an allied health assistant with a minimum of three years of professional experience in allied health services or a recognised Allied Health Professional.


Companion Volume Implementation Guide


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