Decades after the poliomyelitis epidemics in Australia, the aftermath of the disease is now becoming evident in our ageing ‘polio population’. An estimated 400,000 people may be suffering the Late Effects of Polio (LEoP) or Post-Polio Syndrome (PPS). There are many cross-overs in the treatment and management of other chronic diseases and LEoP/PPS, and there are also some very significant differences. If LEoP is not identified, the client can experience rapidly worsening symptoms due to inadvertently incorrect care. Do you know how to recognise these conditions in your practice?

In 2015-2016 we were very pleased to partner with Rotary District 9685 to bring this series of clinical practice workshops to allied health professionals wishing to learn more about management of the late effects of polio.

Click the photo to view the report on the workshops


Who Could Attend?

Allied and other health practitioners such as: physiotherapists, occupational therapists, orthotists, exercise physiologists, nurses, podiatrists, speech pathologists, dietitians, social workers, case managers, and anyone else who is interested in knowing more about the post-polio body.

Workshop Dates and Venues
Ryde - Royal Rehab, 235 Morrison Road
Thursday, 26 November 2015 : 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
St Leonards - Advance Rehab Centre, 3/41 Herbert St
Tuesday, 8 December 2015 : 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Katoomba - Blue Mountains District ANZAC Memorial Hospital, Great Western Highway and Woodlands Road
Saturday, 6 February 2016 : 9:30 am – 12:30 pm
Wyong - Wyong Golf Course, 319 Pacific Highway
Saturday, 27 February 2016 : CANCELLED
North Rocks - Forsight Foundation, 241 North Rocks Rd
Thursday, 10 March 2016 : 9:30 am – 12:30 pm
Penrith - Penrith RSL Club, 8 Tindale Street
Thursday, 24 March 2016 : 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Hornsby - Mt Wilga Private Hospital, 66 Rosamond St
Thursday, 7 April 2016 : 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Gosford - Conference Centre, Gosford Hospital
Holden Street
Thursday, 28 April 2016 : 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Narrabeen - The Tramshed Hall, 1395a Pittwater Road
Thursday, 5 May 2016 : CANCELLED
Windsor - Hawkesbury District Hospital, 2 Day Street
Tuesday, 28 June 2016 : 9:30 am – 12:30 pm

   Workshops Held
   Workshops Cancelled

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For many LEoP/PPS clients, biomedical and pharmaceutical treatments have limited efficacy. Polio survivors are turning their attention and hopes to allied health practitioners to help them improve their quality of life, and prolong their daily functional ability as they age. With a holistic approach to care and increased awareness within the greater health sector, LEoP/PPS clients can manage their symptoms, live better, and age well.

Each workshop covered the following topics in an interactive format

  • Why We Vaccinate A brief history of polio in Australia
  • What is polio? The pathophysiology of poliomyelitis
  • Demystifying Late Effects of Polio and Post-Polio Syndrome What’s the difference?
  • The Aging Polio Population Joining the dots of problems experienced in LEoP / PPS clients
  • Did You Have Polio? Identifying people who may be experiencing LEoP / PPS
  • Practical Strategies Learning how physiotherapists, orthotists, and various other allied health professionals can address key concerns such as managing pain and fatigue, and help with stability and avoiding falls
  • A Late Effects of Polio Case Study Q&A with local polio survivors and team care simulation
Quality Education

Workshops offered by Polio Australia are developed and driven by best-practice research emerging from Europe and the USA. Catriona Morehouse, Physiotherapist, Post-Polio Clinic, Mt Wilga Private Hospital facilitated the final woekshop, in Windsor, with vital contributions from ‘lived experience expert’ polio survivors.

Polio Australia wishes to build a complement of skilled and knowledgeable ‘polio’ practitioners across many different modalities around Australia to further increase awareness and standardise care provision for polio survivors.

As such, attendees completed a short assessment at the conclusion of the event, received a certificate of attendance, and earned 2.5 CPD hours. After completing this training they could also choose to be nominated as a preferred ‘LEoP Practitioner’ on the Polio Australia Interdisciplinary Post-Polio Health Professionals Register.

Clinical Practice Resources

As a thank you for attending, and to further your education, participants received complementary copies of Polio Australia’s resources: "The Late Effects of Polio - Introduction to Clinical Practice" (printed, 36 pages) and “The Late Effects of Polio: Managing Muscles and Mobility” (PDF, 100 pages).

These manuals are fantastic ‘go to’ resources for any health professionals who are already working with LEoP clients, and for those who wish to enhance their expertise in chronic disease management.