Allied Health Professions are: art therapists, dramatherapists, music therapists, chiropodists/podiatrists, dietitians, occupational therapists, operating department practitioners, orthoptists, osteopaths, prosthetists and orthotists, paramedics, physiotherapists, diagnostic radiographers, therapeutic radiographers, and speech and language therapists.
Across all the allied health professions, support workers make a significant contribution for service-users and service delivery.
The support workforce is defined as qualified but unregistered staff that provide care and support for patients and clients, working under supervision and within agreed guidelines and protocols.
In the NHS they are typically employed in Agenda for Change bands 2, 3 and 4. Support workers should be able to work at the top of their scope of practice safely and effectively, be integrated into teams, and be able to progress their careers. However, support staff can face several barriers to their effective development and deployment.
AHP support worker responsibilities can range from performing routine tasks, such as welcoming and preparing service users for treatment, to direct clinical and support tasks such as applying dressings and treatments or helping service users meet their care plans. Support workers are employed in the majority of AHP services, working with registered professionals and providing care and treatment, for example by: