We are improving the way we provide healthcare services to people with disabilities and their families. Alfred Health is launching its Access and Inclusion Plan for People with Disabilities 2019–22.
Chief Executive Prof Andrew Way AM says the plan builds on our organisation’s previous disability action plans and presents a vision for the future where we are truly able to provide an inclusive, safe and accessible health service and workplace.
“We recognise the impact of physical, social and cultural barriers on people with a disability and acknowledge that a variety of strategies are required to ensure that people with disabilities have equal access to health services and employment,” Prof Way said.
Supporting our staff
Alex Coombs is a social worker at The Alfred, providing crisis support, counselling, advocacy, discharge assistance and community resources for patients in The Alfred’s haemophilia clinic.
Three years into his career at Alfred Health, an accident at home left Alex with a physical disability, that permanently changed how he could perform his role.
After 17 months’ rehabilitation, Alex returned to The Alfred in 2012 to continue his career in the Infectious Diseases social work team working in the Ronald Sawes Haemophilia Treatment Centre.
“Returning to work was very important to me – when I was in rehab, it was something to keep me active. My vision of returning to work gave me a goal and something to look forward to.”
Alex said the patience and flexibility from his team, and the organisation, played an important role in enabling him to return to work.
“There was a series of meetings to plan what I would need – equipment, access to computers, how much time I’d be able to physically work, and a slow integration back in to the workforce,” he said.
“I now work 20 hours a week over three days, where as previously it was 40, but this helps me with coordinating things like my care and transport.
“I work with patients all over the hospital, and the physical environment is not without its challenges, but everyone has been very good at supporting me with a job access plan and generally making my job manageable from a wheelchair.”