• Despite its varied representation, allied health needs to speak with a unified voice if it is to address crosscutting issues and influence health care policy (Chapman).
  • Assessing the health care needs of the population would be a valuable way to establish the need for allied health services (Fraher).
  • Decisions about the future of allied health will not be made in Washington, DC, but by the many thousands of individuals and organizations at the state and local levels and in the professions (Salsberg).
  • The current time of change is an ideal opportunity to rethink what allied health is and what it can do differently.

OTHER INDIVIDUAL COMMENTS

  • A careful analysis of the knowledge and abilities of different allied health occupations would likely reveal enormous overlap. Having such information could allow organizations to make hiring decisions based on what they need done regardless of a person’s title or credentials.
  • Defining the roles and responsibilities of licensed health science professionals could help make them accountable for self-regulation and for overseeing workforce issues. Such definitions also could allow for the specification of career paths into the health science professions.
  • Complementary or alternative medicine needs to be considered in any discussion of allied health since Americans are spending billions of dollars on these forms of care every year.
  • Real-time data are needed so young people being trained in allied health will be in a better position to secure jobs. Without such information, there may be a backlash at the state and federal levels as people who have been trained cannot find jobs.
  • The use of unlicensed medical assistants will likely continue to grow as care moves into the community and reimbursement rates go down.
  • Students and prospective students need to know about the roles and responsibilities of health care workers, including allied health workers, to have realistic expectations about future careers.


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