As some of the COVID-19 restrictions start to ease, ECH Wellness Centres are welcoming back more clients and helping them get back into routines – or maybe even start new ones!
ECH Senior Physiotherapist Chris Innes-Wong explains, “Due to the recent COVID-19 restrictions many people would have missed out on their regular exercise routines. They may also have not been going to the shops, or to their regular appointments and so on. These regular tasks are all important factors in helping to maintain fitness and keep us moving.”
The ECH Wellness Centres have remained in operation during COVID-19, however the space has been modified so that gym sessions have been one-on-one. Following the easing of Government restrictions on gyms, Allied Health group programs are resuming in a limited capacity adhering to Government guidelines.
“We can talk people through exercises or pain management strategies,” says Chris. “Often, over the phone, we can help assess what might be causing injury and come up with strategies to avoid aggravating it.”
“If someone has been knitting or reading more, and in a set position for long periods of time, they might not necessarily connect this to their increased pain. We can advise on how to adjust posture and recommend stretches to ease the aches these postures might bring.”
ECH Wellness client Ruth Pryor explains how receiving one-on-one clinic sessions at ECH Wellness Greenacres has supported her.
“I have attended the Strength for Life Allied Health program for the past nine years. However, when these were suspended due to COVID-19 restrictions I started doing one-on-one exercise sessions in the ECH gym with Jo (ECH Exercise Physiologist). During recent weeks, these sessions along with regular walking have been extremely helpful and fundamental to helping me maintain my overall health.”
Staying connected through Telehealth
While phone consultations may be less common practice for physiotherapists, Telehealth is a growing area for group therapy and other Allied Health professions. ECH Speech Pathologist Coralie Hayley has been delighted by how helpful online platforms have been in helping her stay connected to ECH clients. Telehealth has made it possible to offer speech therapy to clients in their own home by way of visual and auditory means and can be accessed by anyone with a device that has internet and can make or receive a video call.
Through the online video conferencing platform “Zoom”, Coralie has been able to keep meeting with her group of clients at their regular times. “I run a group for people with ‘aphasia’, that is, communication difficulties which occur after a stroke, along with one on-one sessions for clients,”Coralie says. “For many of us during COVID-19, the things we used to do stopped and this left many people feeling isolated.”
ECH client Margaret is on a level four Home Care Package and receives ECH At-Home services, along with speech pathology. Margaret explains her experience with Telehealth appointments; “I like using Zoom because it’s very easy and it’s one-on-one. It’s so good to have the Speech Pathologist there; Coralie shows me what I have to do and there is instant feedback. It’s very interesting and enjoyable – I absolutely love it!”
For more information about Allied Health services, contact ECH on 1300 275 324.