The Growth Of Allied Healthcare As A Profession Post COVID

Allied health professionals provide frontline support to patients by providing diagnostic, therapeutic, curative as well as rehabilitative care. Apart from these they play a significant role in preventive as well as promotive health care activities. Most of these non-nursing, non-physician roles are filled by professionals who are part of inter-disciplinary teams that come together to provide comprehensive care to patients to help them heal faster. Hence their role is extremely crucial for effective and efficient delivery of patient care.

ICHPO, the organisation of International Chief Health Professions Officers, described allied health care professions as “a distinct group of health professionals who apply their expertise to prevent disease transmission, diagnose, treat, and rehabilitate people of all ages and all specialties.” Together with a range of technical and support staff, they may deliver direct patient care and health improvement interventions to restore and maintain optimal physical, psychological, cognitive as well as social functions. Allied healthcare professionals perform a variety of jobs, including audiology & speech-language therapist, physiotherapist, health data analyst, clinical nutritionist, medical laboratory technologist, emergency medicine technologist, perfusion technologist, cardiovascular technologist, respiratory therapist, optometrist, occupational therapist, health information manager, medical imaging technologist, etc. These interdisciplinary professionals play a crucial role in every hospital department and point of care setting, including imaging, diagnostics, labs, ICUs, emergency departments, casualty centres, etc. Without these professionals, healthcare would effectively come to a standstill.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced people indoors, but it also opened many new avenues for allied healthcare professionals. With new Telemedicine Practice guidelines by Ministry of Health and Family welfare in place, healthcare delivery continued despite formidable challenges and enabled patients to get better faster, get diagnosed on time, and get back to their daily routine without further disruptions. Getting care at home remotely and through personal visits decreases the chances of getting infected, especially when visiting hospitals and clinics. As the number of patients with COVID-related problems such as motor and sensory issues increased after the pandemic, it was a formidable task for healthcare providers to counsel, help, and assist these patients. In nutshell, Covid-19 changed the entire landscape of healthcare delivery and highlighted the already existing lacunae in Indian Healthcare delivery system – Deficiency of trained manpower being one of the primary concerns. Recognizing the same, Government, Educational Institutions as well as healthcare providers have to come together to train this next generation of healthcare professionals.

Chitkara University is one of the fore-runners in the region in training professionals who are well-versed in the latest technologies, modalities and advancements and hence well equipped to face the challenges in the post-COVID era. For more than decade, Chitkara University has been striving to provide holistic, inclusive as well as globally relevant learning and training opportunities to the aspiring allied healthcare professionals through its well-structured, industry oriented allied healthcare programs.

Allied healthcare professionals are highly in demand at public as well as private hospitals, clinics, diagnostic chains, medical equipment industry, wellness chains, rehabilitation centres and home healthcare platforms, where these professionals as a part of inter-disciplinary teams provide can holistically care to patients when they need it the most. Graduates from Chitkara University have been doing commendable work in all these organisations and have even explored their potential further as freelancers as well as entrepreneurs. Because of their comprehensive theoretical and practical knowledge, well-honed technical skills and exemplary dedication to their profession, these professionals have not only been able to attain handsome remunerations and job satisfaction but also immense respect not only among their peers and patients but throughout the medical community.

If you’re an aspiring allied healthcare student and want to contribute your bit to the society through helping patients recover faster and building a robust healthcare system, joining a bachelor’s or master’s prestigious university such as Chitkara University is a great way to kickstart your career in healthcare.

Further reading