Shared Care - Working Together for a Healthier Australia
Health Professional


Click on to a profession in one of the segments in the schematic below to see the services which may be provided by the selected health care professional to assist patients undergoing stroke recovery.

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What does a Physiotherapist do?

Physiotherapists use a holistic, person-centred approach to support patients across the lifespan to maximise their mobility and functional capacities, and therefore their independence and general wellbeing.


Physiotherapists assist patients with musculoskeletal, cardiothoracic and neurological problems.  They provide lifestyle modification and self-management advice; manual and electrophysical therapies; prescribe aids and appliances; prescribe exercise and supervise exercise classes; provide physical activity counselling and movement training and provide health promotion and prevention activities and advice.  Physiotherapists treat a range of chronic conditions, often as part of multidisciplinary teams, including:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary diesase
  • Diabetes
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Obesity
  • Hypertension
  • Stroke

Physiotherapists are uniquely placed to address risk factors for chronic conditions. They have knowledge of the complexities of co-morbidities and physical limitations in people with chronic conditions and are trained to design programs that respond to these complications.

A patient may be referred to a physiotherapist following diagnosis of a chronic condition or following an assessment that the patient may be at risk of developing a chronic condition.

Medicare Eligibility

Any physiotherapist registered with the Physiotherapists Registration Board in the state or territory where they are practising is eligible to provide services under the Medicare chronic disease management items. Most private health insurers provide rebates.


Physiotherapy courses may be entered through a university Bachelors, Masters or Professional Doctorate program. All members of the Australian Physiotherapy Association are required to participate in the Association’s continuing professional development program.



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