By Australian Kinesiology Association, November 18th, 2021
Information for our Kinesiology community
As we see the corona virus pandemic increasingly affecting our day to day lives here in Australia, it is important that kinesiology practitioners and students, clinic operators and clinic owners are taking measures to minimise risk to themselves and the public.
Perhaps more importantly, the concern and uncertainty of the current climate is likely to be impacting you, your students and clients. Now is a good time to draw on your training and skills as a kinesiology practitioner, teacher or student. Our mental health is just as important to consider as our physical well-being.
Open the dialogue and talk to your friends, family, colleagues and communities. Critically examine what is being reported in the media. Take the time to pause and listen to your intuition and consider getting a balance to support yourself.
Below we have provided you with information we have pulled together from credible sources to provide some simple measures on how you can protect yourself, your clients and your students over the coming months. We must all be vigilant in monitoring government resources to ensure that we are working with the most up to date advice by monitoring recommendations from the Australian Government Department of Health updates. Additionally, the AKA recommends therapists ensure they are familiar with best practice standards around infection control.
The AKA cannot, and will not direct members to close their business. It is the responsibility of each member to consider their clients, their vulnerability and own health, based on the information provided in the health updates and make an informed and educated decision on their own individual risk assessment. AKA will take guidance from respected global health organisations and medical advisors and in alignment with various government restrictions.
It is important to ensure detailed clinical record keeping is maintained, including informed consent and contraindications. While therapists have the right to refuse treatment for any clients who may be suffering an illness, keep in mind Australia’s anti-discrimination laws. Hygiene and infection control is paramount. Ensure you are disinfecting all surfaces that may have come into contact with any virus, including objects you may not have considered in the past (e.g. doorknobs, buttons, sprays, books and other tools used in the session).
We hope you find the resources we have put together useful. But most importantly, we hope that you all remain safe and healthy through this challenging time.
ADVICE TO AKA MEMBERS
This PDF has been developed by combining a number of credible sources to provide some guidance for clinicians, clinic and college owners and teachers.
SYMPTOM DOOR NOTICE
Download and Print
Inform visitors to your workplace about the symptoms of COVID-19.
Download, print and display this notice on the door of your clinic or workplace to clearly advise when it is inappropriate to enter.
HAND WASHING PROTOCOL
Download and Print
Download, print and display this notice in your workplace bathroom to promote thorough hand washing procedures.
SOCIAL DISTANCING & KINESIOLOGY
Online Kinesiology Balance
Surrogate Kinesiology Balance
Online Kinesiology Balances protocol for surrogating purposes has been permanently relaxed to allow self-testing.
It is important that you practice within your scope and exercise discretion.
To support practitioners in face to face consultations see templates below to facilitate a COVID safe plan for your business. The intention of the documents is for you to use them as a guide and to modify them according to your business needs i.e., as a sole trader working in clinic. All documents below are are referenced from the Institute of Community Directors Australia.
How do I stay informed?
Monitor recommendations in relation to COVID-19 from the government links below:
Is there any financial assistance available to me as a sole trader?
You may be eligible for the government incentive for sole traders. Visit the links below for information:
Should I still be practicing Kinesiology?
Please check the link below pertaining to your state to determine whether you may still continue with face-to face kinesiology services.
Please click here to view Victoria’s COVID-19 update
Please click here to view NSW’s COVID-19 update
22/05/2020: YES; Kinesiologists are allowed to work in a face to face capacity in ACT.
21/05/2020: YES; Kinesiologists are allowed to work in a face to face capacity in Western Australia.
20/07/2021 Level 5 Restrictions will be in place from 6pm. Kinesiologists to work online only.
Kinesiology is other allied health and in the same category as personal services.
More information is available on the SA government website here: https://www.covid-19.sa.gov.au/restrictions-and-responsibilities/activities-and-gatherings/current-activity-restrictions
1/12/2020: YES; Kinesiologists are allowed to work face to face with restrictions.
19/05/2020: YES; Kinesiologists are allowed to work in a face to face capacity in Tasmania.
The South East Queensland lockdown has been extended to 4pm Sunday 8 August.
20/05/2020: YES; Kinesiologists are allowed to work in a face to face capacity in QLD
15/05/2020 (at 12 noon Stage 2 to commence): YES; Kinesiologists are able to practice Kinesiology face-to-face.
Should I be practicing from an ethical standpoint?
You the practitioner, are the single most important person in this equation. Because if you catch the virus you will be unable to assist anyone else. If you do choose to work with clients, we recommend you wear a mask, gloves and a different gown for every client to protect both you, your clients and your loved ones. Remember we don’t know where our clients have been for the last 2 weeks and who they have been around, so for every client you see, you are getting the exposure of many, many people.
Our work can be particularly helpful at stressful times such as these. Therefore, if you prefer to offer your invaluable services to others, it may be worth considering offering distance balances in whatever is your preferred way (Zoom, Skype, Messenger), and spread the kindness and caring. See documents above for guidance (note, these are not rules).
Ensure you consider confidentiality on technology platforms that may need to be considered for privacy reasons. We recommend you ascertain consent in writing with a statement similar to: “With regard to using this x (e.g. Zoom) technology platform, whilst I, (kinesiologist name), will make every attempt to maintain confidentiality within the standard boundaries of my clinical practice, I cannot guarantee client confidentiality in accordance with terms and conditions of use of this platform. Do you, (client name), agree to continue, considering this information? Yes/No”
If I choose to continue working, are there insurance considerations?
Some insurers will not cover you for online consultations. BMS, the current AKA recommended insurer and AON, the former AKA recommended insurer, follow AKA guidelines as listed above in the AKA Online Kinesiology Balance Protocol.
Some insurers also require you to have face-to-face clients sign a register acknowledging the risks involved in face-to-face consultations at this time. You should also outline in your notes the infectious control procedures you took.
In essence, we recommend you contact your insurance provider to ensure you remain covered if you continue to practice.
Is there an infectious control refresher course I can do?
The government has a free, 30 minute refresher course for infectious control here: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/apps-and-tools/covid-19-infection-control-training Note that registration is required.
NOTE: these refresher courses/modules are approved for AKA CPE points.
Am I considered a healthcare worker?
A kinesiologist falls under the banner of “unregistered” healthcare worker. Please note kinesiologists are NOT registered with AHPRA.
What software should I use for online consultations?
Our IT provider has recommended using Zoom, Microsoft Teams or WhatsApp for video conferencing. All of these platforms are secure platforms, but you need to be aware that, like all data transmission, they are not without flaws. Security breaches are very rare and as likely as a phone call being intercepted. We recommend you explain this risk to your clients.
How can I remain in contact with the AKA?
Please do not call the AKA Office, we are now working remotely, due to government requirements. We are available to answer your enquiries via email only.
We thank you for your understanding and patience during this challenging time.
What do I do if my First Aid has expired or is due to expire during this period?
Do not panic. All lapsed First Aid will be given a three month extension. This extension will revised by the AKA Management Committee after the three month period if the need arises.
What if I was unable to fulfil my 20 CPE points for 1st July 2020?
For those who did not meet the minimum 20 CPE points for 2020, you may submit 40 points by 1st July 2021.
Click here to view your completed CPE
Click here for CPE Activity List
What will happen to my Professional Indemnity Insurance cover if I have not met the AKA essential practitioner requirements?
If you are with AKA’s recommended insurance provider BMS, your First Aid and CPE requirements will default to AKA’s current recommendations, guidelines and policies and any modifications to these set during this period. However, if your cover is not with BMS, you will need to contact your insurance provider directly or read their product disclosure statement (PDS).
We thank you for your patience. In the event this page has not addressed your questions, please do not hesitate to contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org. May you remain healthy, safe and centred during the ever changing circumstances related to COVID-19.
The Australian Kinesiology Association is a not-for-profit, leading industry body. Supporting kinesiologists and maintaining the highest standards for the profession, the association connects and supports Australian kinesiologists while advocating for the profession.