Outstanding Organisation finalists
Earbus Foundation of WA (EFWA) is recognised for their work to reduce middle ear disease in young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. Middle ear disease is a disease of poverty; often caused by social factors including overcrowded housing, poor nutrition, and poor access to primary care.
After recognising the gap in effective service provision to Aboriginal populations across regional WA, EFWA created an Outreach Program with communities to address the issue of Aboriginal children’s poor ear health.
In one remote region of WA, the rate of chronic ear disease decreased from 12.9% in the first quarter of the year to 3.4% in the third quarter of the year. To date, EFWA has succeeded in getting below the World Health Organization’s 4% benchmark for every region.
Port Macquarie NSW
Adaptive Physiotherapy and Performance is recognised for delivering engaging, evidence-based services to children and adolescents with neurological, developmental and musculoskeletal conditions across mid-North Coast NSW.
They provide surf therapy and adaptive sports programs, which provide a bridge between fun and therapy. These programs enable children and adolescents to develop their sporting and play skills, as well as better engage with peers at school, connect with family and develop lifelong positive health habits.
Importantly, participants also improve their balance, coordination, self-esteem and sense of identity.
If they are successful in the Awards, Adaptive Physiotherapy and Performance hopes to expand their program and invest in surf equipment, adaptive and parasport equipment, and the development of educational resources for schools, parents and healthcare professionals.
Restore Function Physiotherapy is recognised for their work to ensure female athletes receive the same high standard of medical management as their male counterparts, reducing risk of injury.
Miranda O’Hara is the founder and owner of Restore Function Physiotherapy. Miranda was instrumental in developing the AFLW’s Prep to Play injury risk reduction program during her time as head of the Brisbane Lions’ AFLW Medical Department.
Thanks to Miranda’s hard work, the strategies resulted in only two Brisbane Lions AFLW players being unavailable for selection due to injury.
This high-quality medical management continued into season two, with the Lions having the least number of injuries in the competition.
Team Excellence finalists
The Advance Rehab Centre team is recognised for their work in assisting patients with Functional Neurological Disorders (FND), creating a multi-disciplinary team approach to ensure patients have access to the very specific neurological rehabilitation required by this population.
After realising the current approach to treating patients with FND in NSW was inconsistent and fractured, the team strove to create an evidence-based and dedicated multi-disciplinary team approach.
The FND team works with other clinicians to ensure patients have access to vestibular, musculo-skeletal and chronic pain management consultants.
Their tireless dedication to improving their FND treatment service has included conducting audits of existing practices, literature reviews, creating training programs for new clinicians, and connecting with a network of skilled medical and health professionals.
Dementia Australia, National
Dementia Australia is recognised for their work in tailoring a program specifically for the requirements of men who are carers of a loved one living with dementia.
The program, Blokes in a Caring Role, is the first of its kind in Australia and is run over several weeks to increase carers’ understanding of dementia, learn practical strategies to manage behaviour changes, explore how their own role and identity has been affected by the caring role, and develop a plan to access support services.
If male carers can access appropriate support with tailored interventions, carer load is reduced and enables a person living with dementia to remain at home for longer.
Blokes in a Caring Role aims to train more staff, deliver more sessions in rural and remote locations, and create a tailored version of the program for farmers caring for family members with dementia.