Allied Health Professions (AHPs) supporting patient flow


This quick guide demonstrates how NHS emergency care, in particular patient flow through the health and care system, benefits from allied health professionals (AHPs).

AHPs, the third largest professional group in the NHS, are highly trained autonomous professionals whose collaborative work with medical, nursing and social care colleagues is the engine of patient flow. 

Delivering the commitments of AHPs into Action demands the optimisation of the AHP workforce, which can significantly improve quality, effectiveness and productivity across care pathways. This document gives examples of how this can be done.

Quick guide: allied health professions supporting patient flow

Bringing the AHP workforce into patient flow planning can improve quality, effectiveness and productivity.

Each section gives a brief overview of the contribution that AHPs have made to deliver safe, effective patient care and flow, followed by case studies which demonstrate how AHPs:

  • work in the community keeping people safe and well at home
  • ‘front door’ assess, diagnose and treat patients in emergency departments, ambulatory care and assessment units
  • support avoidance of hospital admission
  • enable early rehabilitation and reducing overnight admissions
  • drive ‘Home First’ (discharge to assess) to avoid in-hospital deconditioning of frail, older people.

Allied health professions supporting patient flow: a quick guide PDF, 767.7 KB

This quick guide demonstrates how NHS emergency care can benefit from the skills of AHPs and highlights innovative service redesign and the delivery of new care models.

In AHPs into action - our first year, Joanne Fillingham, Clinical Director Allied Health Professions (AHPs) at NHS Improvement looks at urgent and emergency care to support flow and makes reference to this quick guide. 

Share your stories and good practice on Twitter with #AHPsIntoAction and #EndPJParalysis.

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