Our allied health professionals are specialists in supporting people with spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities. They include physiotherapists, occupational therapists and registered nurses who work in partnership with you to develop holistic solutions to enable you to reach your potential.
Key allied health services
We provide allied health services in the following key areas:
Access to expertise and funding
We provide assistance with applications to government concession and subsidy schemes:
- for prescribed aids and equipment (MASS).
- to help with modifications in the workplace (Employment Assistance fund).
- for assistive technology prescriptions including incontinence assessments, driving assessments and splinting (NDIS).
Specialist personal advice and assessments
- Individual assessments to evaluate your needs and help you to meet your lifestyle choices
- Bowel, bladder and pressure area advice and management
- Home modification assessments and designs, and referrals to home modification service providers
- Workplace assessments to help you overcome barriers in your place of work
- Driving assessments (in some regions)
Mobility, seating and assistive technology solutions
We are the mobility and seating, and assistive technology specialists. We can assist you with:
- Seating and postural assessments, including pressure mapping, to ensure you have the best choice of product and fit
- Trial and prescription of aids, disability specific technology and equipment that can improve independence and lifestyle, for example mobility, pressure care, continence, personal care, transfers and environmental controls.
- Hand splinting including typing, writing and resting pans.
- Equipment for leisure and recreational pursuits.
If you’re eligible, we can even help you prepare funding applications so you can afford the prescribed aids and equipment you need.
Spinal Life members can also access a 10% discount on equipment hire from Think Mobility in Queensland. Click here to become a member.
We provide specialist in-home Community Nursing services dedicated to looking after your health and wellbeing.
Our nursing services are tailored to meet the complex needs and challenges of people with spinal cord damage and other physical disability, including:
- Bladder and bowel management
- Catheter changes and cleaning
- Wound and pressure sore care
- PEG and feeding care
- Diabetes management
- Medication review
- General health assessments
Contact us to find out more, including how you can include these services in your NDIS plan.
Our specialist physiotherapy service is an integrated approach to advanced neurological and musculoskeletal rehabilitation.
Reduce pain, regain and enhance muscle movements, treat overuse injuries and prevent injury recurrence.
Return to your work, sport and hobbies at a higher level with our support.
If you are a Spinal Life member, you will receive a 10% discount on all physiotherapy services. Click here to become a member.
Meet the Team
We’d like to introduce you to our experienced and multidisciplinary team of Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists, and Registered Nurses.
Julie has worked as a Physiotherapist in regions around the world, including England, North America, Tonga and Sydney with her current work at the Healthy Living Centre in Cairns.
She provides physiotherapy services to people with physical disabilities, helping her clients with things like pain management, strengthening, stretching, wheelchair skills training, neurological rehabilitation, hydrotherapy and gym programs.
Julie said after travelling the world, she hoped Cairns is now her ‘forever home’ and she’s looking forward to working with the Allied Health team at the Healthy Living Centre to make a difference in people’s lives.
Exercise Physiologist, Cairns
Elise is Spinal Life Australia’s first ever Exercise Physiologist and is excited to help people reach their personal fitness and rehabilitation goals at the Healthy Living Centre.
She graduated as an Accredited Exercise Physiologist from James Cook University in 2015 and has worked in gym, hydrotherapy and clinical environments assisting clients with a wide range of conditions and disabilities.
Working with the Active Gym, Active Hydro Pool and other Allied Health team members at the Centre, Elise is ready to create tailored exercise and fitness plans for her clients suited to their individual goals and capabilities.
Occupational Therapist, Cairns
Georgia has held previous occupational therapy roles in Melbourne, England and Cairns and is excited to be one of the first team members at the Spinal Life Healthy Living Centre in Cairns.
Her role involves working with clients on sourcing and applying for rehabilitation, equipment and assistive technology, including modifications for their home, vehicle or work.
Georgia said she was looking forward to joining the team at the Healthy Living Centre and use her skills and knowledge to support people with physical disabilities.
Kasey has plenty of experience working as an Occupational Therapist in the disability sector, working with clients with cerebral palsy and vision impairment before joining the team at Spinal Life.
She enjoys working with her clients to achieve their goals, no matter how big or small, and is excited about the choice and control that the NDIS can offer to participants.
She graduated from Deakin University in Victoria in 2006 with a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy (Honours), moving to Queensland the year after graduation.
While Kasey has lived in Queensland for over a decade now, she still remains a passionate supporter of the Geelong Cats.
Emily worked as a Personal Support Worker with Spinal life Australia for nearly four years before joining the Allied Health team as an Occupational Therapist.
Her experiences have enabled her to get a unique insight into the daily challenges faced by people with spinal cord damage and she knows the difference the right support and equipment can provide.
In 2018, Emily was offered the opportunity to travel with and support the Australian Shooting Team to the World Shooting Para Sport Championships in South Korea, which she called a rewarding and educational experience.
When she’s not working with her clients to overcome challenges, Emily enjoys spending time with her family and friends and of course, her dog.
Community Nurse Specialist – Queensland
After completing her nursing degree at Griffith University, Elle worked as a registered nurse at the Spinal Injuries Unit at Princess Alexandra Hospital before bringing her experience and knowledge to Spinal Life Australia.
The former rural NSW resident provides specialist in-home nursing services to improve the wellbeing and quality of life for clients with spinal cord damage, including bladder and bowel management, pressure sore and wound care, diabetes education, medication reviews, general health assessments and more.
While she’s not helping others, Elle enjoys settling down with a good book.
Community Nurse Specialist – WA
Paula has more than 32 years’ experience in nursing, including many years working in the disability sector.
Initially from the UK, Paula brings her years of expertise to Western Australia to deliver specialist in-home nursing services to people with spinal cord damage, including continence care, catheter changes and pressure and wound management.
She also uses her knowledge to help up-skill Personal Support Workers in the region to assist with more complex aspects of disability health care.
Paula has a Diploma of Higher Education in Midwifery Studies at Greenwich University in London and studied mental health at Murdock University.
In her down time, Paula loves spending time with her extended family as well as her many pets, including dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, chickens and pigeons – just to name a few!
Occupational Therapist – Cairns
Lucy brings with her over a decade of experience in clinical areas, including paediatric care, Indigenous family health and disability services.
She will be assisting clients in Far North Queensland reach their goals and improve their quality of life at the Spinal Life Healthy Living Centre when it opens in 2020.
When she isn’t working, Lucy loves keeping active and especially enjoys the outdoors, playing sports and going camping with her family.
Nick has more than 10 years’ experience as a physiotherapist with a specialist interest in spinal injury management, transitional rehabilitation and pain management.
Prior to starting his role as the Allied Health Practice Manager in 2019, Nick worked at the Spinal Injuries Unit at Princess Alexandra Hospital, treating patients both inside the Unit and upon their return to the community.
After years of helping patients with spinal cord damage at the Unit achieve their goals and make the transition from hospital to home, he now uses his experience and knowledge to help the Allied Health Team reach their maximum potential and ensure their clients achieve their goals.
Occupational Therapist – Townsville
Kristin is passionate about helping people achieve their goals and helping clients break down barriers to what they want to achieve.
After previous placements in Education Queensland, James Cook University and Ozcare, she joined the Spinal Life Australia team in 2018 as an occupational therapist for members and clients in the Townsville region.
She’s lived in Townsville since she was 8 years old and, when she’s not assisting clients or spending time with her family, Kristin keeps active by playing netball or walking up the picturesque Castle Hill.
With Bachelor’s Degrees in Health Science and Occupational Therapy, and having completed her placement with Spinal Life as part of our Cairns unit, Yvette has hit the ground running since she joined the Allied Health Team and been delivering excellent results for her clients.
This includes a client with complete C4 quadriplegia who is back fishing after Yvette’s assistance helped fit a boat hoist and custom fishing chair with chin control and electrical reel.
Examples like this show the determination for results that saw Yvette represent Australia in water polo. She’s not all machine though and does like getting her Betty Crocker on and doing some baking.
Rebecca has more than 20 years of experience working as an OT across 2 continents. With her Bachelor of Occupational Therapy from the University of Queensland, she started working in Community Health north of Brisbane before moving to London.
There she spent most of her working time with a wheelchair and seating service. With a newly discovered interest in seating, and its potential effects, Rebecca returned to Australia. She worked for a time with the Department of Housing before joining Spinal Life in 2006.
Rebecca aims to assist clients in living a full and comfortable life and finding solutions to the every day challenges that may arise.
Driver Trained Occupational Therapist
Maxine received a Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy) and a driving course in Sydney. She has since worked in a wide variety of practice areas, including inpatient and outpatient settings, for the last decade.
With a passion for hiking and travelling, Maxine has taken the opportunity to work overseas to hone her craft. This led to her taking the opportunity to work as an OT at the Kings College Hospital in London.
Since she joined the Spinal Life team in 2014, Maxine has made a real difference for her clients. One example includes a gentleman who was told he would never drive again, but, with Maxine’s support, has successfully completed his driving lessons using hands controls and is well on his way to achieving his goal of driving independence.
Joanne has turned her Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy) into a career as an OT spanning more than 30 years, primarily working with services that impact people undergoing injury rehabilitation and living with disability.
Since she joined Spinal Life Australia in 2011, Joanne has assisting clients by reviewing and prescribing equipment, and home and workplace mods. She works with NDIS applications, Aged Care, Job Access and insurers to help clients achieve their goals in independence, mobility and community participation.
She recently worked with Job Access to obtain a trailer, 4×4 wheelchair and other equipment for a client’s role as camp leader, as well as assisting another client convert their dog-washing trailer to be wheelchair accessible and operated.
Physiotherapist – Allied Health Services
Gail completed her Bachelor of Physiotherapy at the University of Queensland. She has since worked in a diverse array of positions in the field.
She has been the Physiotherapist in Charge at the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane. She has also operated a private practice at Orthopaedics North West Hospital. Gail has been at Spinal Life Australia working for the Allied Health Services area for the last 8 years.
A mother of 4 and grandmother of twins, Gail’s work takes a long-term focus in finding the best outcomes for her clients. One recent client, a lawyer, was pushing a manual wheel chair through the CBD, up and down steep inclines. Gail worked with the client to access Power Assist options and has significantly reduced their chance of injury.
Anthony gained his qualifications as a physiotherapist at the University of Toronto. Since then Anthony has gained a wealth of experience in the field.
His specialised internships were in spinal cord rehabilitation and acute neurological ICU. He has since worked in outpatient care, and at the Bridgepoint Health Rehabilitation Hospital in Toronto, and Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney, where he has worked in:
- spinal cord injury rehabilitation,
- complex neurological rehabilitation,
- nerve damage, neuropathy,
- stroke rehabilitation and more.
Anthony’s philosophy is about achieving the best outcome for every client. A current client went from 6 months of being unable to safely stand or transfer after a decline in function, to standing and transferring independently by working closely with Anthony.
Anthony uses his experience, skill and passion to help every client achieve their goals comfortably and safely.