New health clinic to open in the West End

Bachelor of Human Movement student Karly Bartlett and Bachelor of Health Science graduate Alexander Jackson at the Magill Allied Health Clinic, which will complement the new City West Health and Medical Clinic. COMMUNITY
Bachelor of Human Movement student Karly Bartlett and Bachelor of Health Science graduate Alexander Jackson at the Magill Allied Health Clinic, which will complement the new City West Health and Medical Clinic.

Artist impressions of the City West Health and Medical Clinic that are currently under construction and will complement existing clinics at the City East and Magill campuses.Artist impressions of the City West Health and Medical Clinic that are currently under construction and will complement existing clinics at the City East and Magill campuses.

The finishing touches are being put on a new $4.3 million state-of-the-art health clinic at City West that will offer services to the public.

The City West Health and Medical Clinic is expected to open in a few months, with the majority of treatment undertaken by the University’s health students under the supervision of qualified practitioners.

UniSA Division of Health Sciences Dean of Clinical Education and Equity, Professor Esther May, says it’s an exciting development for the University and builds on the existing clinics at the City East and Magill campuses.

“This development is seen as an important addition in clinical teaching facilities that brings together real world learning with community service,” Prof May says.

“Clients who attend the clinic will be able to have dedicated time with skilled and enthusiastic students in training and know at all times that qualified health professionals are overseeing the services provided.

“Students will learn from clients about what having a health conditions means to their quality of life and performance.

“Members of the community have the opportunity to join a learning environment where their health and wellbeing will be the focus of a dedicated team, and a program of intervention will be worked up with them at the centre.

“They become important teachers of the students about what the ‘lived experience’ of having a health condition means.

“We want our students to really understand what it is like to live with a health challenge and how they can partner with clients to improve their situation.”

Prof May says a significant benefit of the clinic is that UniSA health students will have the opportunity to practice in a clinic that is run as an actual health service, therefore providing valuable additional placements.

“Within health degrees there is a need to apply theory learnt in the classroom and online to working with clients and communities,” Prof May says.

“We partner with health, aged care and other community agencies to organise placements for students to learn from and with health professionals and their clients – these partnerships are critical but with health care changes and increased student numbers there has been a need to provide additional placements through our own University clinics.

“To date these clinics have been stand-alone podiatry, physiotherapy and exercise physiology clinics but with the development of the City West Health and Medical Clinic we have the opportunity to provide services and programs with inter-professional teams of students under the supervision of health professionals.”

Last year the existing clinics provided 16,000 occasions of service to patients and this will increase significantly with the new clinic.

Professional health services to be offered at the new clinic include physiotherapy, podiatry, exercise physiology, occupational therapy, nutrition, midwifery, nursing, psychology and social work.

“Patients will be provided with holistic care, optimising shared and inter-professional services wherever possible,” Prof May says.

“The clinic will be very much run as a patient-centred and family-centred facility.”

Once fully operational, the clinic will cater for 350-400 placements for students each year.

The clinic will be located at 27 North Terrace in the Adelaide CBD, next to the new Royal Adelaide Hospital and the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute. There are also future plans to develop an inter-professional clinic at UniSA’s Whyalla campus.

The student assisted allied health, nursing and midwifery services to be offered at the new clinic are being finalised but will depend on patient referrals that fit with the programs being developed.

At this stage there will be an emphasis on chronic disease management, rehabilitation following stroke and other neurological conditions, children with disabilities, complex conditions suited to inter-professional support and people challenged by healthcare costs or availability.

Anyone interested in finding out more about the referral process or the clinics should contact Dr Kuan Tan, Manager Health and Clinical Education on kuan.tan@unisa.edu.au or (08) 8302 2033.

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