The Role of Allied Health Professionals in Healthcare Teams

Allied health professional is a critical component of the healthcare delivery system and play a vital role in the delivery of health care services that are associated with physicians and nurses. This large category comprises of physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech and language pathologists/therapists, pharmacists, radiographers/technologists, respiratory therapists, dietitians and many others. This blog focuses on the functions of these workers and emphasizes on their significance in the overall patient care.

Defining Allied Health Professionals

All the allied health professionals are an example of a profession that is divided into many subcategories, all of which are important in the field of health care. Some of them are physiotherapist, radiographer, occupational therapist, respiratory therapist, dietitian and speech and language pathologist. They are care that is specific to assisting with the overall patient’s course of treatment.

  • Example: Emily is a Physical therapist who attends to patients who have had orthopedic surgeries for instance those who need to build up their muscles and improve their mobility through exercise regimes.

Enhancing Patient Care

This paper has discussed the specialized skills of the allied health professionals and how they help in enhancing patient care. The use of ASHA certified specialists results in improved patient care due to focusing the interventions. For example, respiratory therapists work with the ventilators and take care of patients who have breathing problems. Speech-language pathologists treat individuals with speech and/or swallowing problems. Pharmacists provide MTM to ensure that the patient achieves the best possible therapeutic outcomes.

  • Example: John, a respiratory therapist, works on the management of patients with chronic respiratory diseases in maintaining their ventilation needs.

Supporting Healthcare Teams

Health care is a team sport, and allied health professionals are valuable members of the team. They thus assist in developing and implementing the overall treatment plans that the physicians and nurses come up with. Dietitians assist doctors and nurses in preparing diaries of the diet for patients with special requirements of the daily intake of food. Most of the times, occupational therapists work together with surgeons to come up with a care plan for patients after they have been operated on. Pharmacists work in many fields to help oversee the patient’s medication therapy management.

  • Example: Sarah, a dietitian, works with a team of other healthcare professionals to create ideal nutrition programs for diabetic patients, thus promoting healthy eating for the patients.

Personal and Professional Growth

The allied health professionals have numerous chances for their development both personal and professional. The opportunities for the continuous learning and the possibility to specialize are provided to them in order to develop their talents and progress in their professional lives. Some of the specializations include sports medicine, pediatric care among others. There are specialty certifications that one can get in MRI and/or CT scan as a radiologic technologist. The roles of pharmacists include, but not limited to, oncology, pediatrics, or clinical pharmacy.

  • Example: For instance, Mike who is a radiologic technologist obtained a certification in MRI technology in order to focus and enhance his practice in the radiology section.


Allied health professionals are an integral component of healthcare delivery system, because they offer concentrated care that cannot be offered by doctors and nurses. These positions are vital in the improvement of patient care, backing the healthcare teams and the provision of total healthcare services. It is therefore through the recognition of the allied health professional that the role and the value that these practitioners offer to the health care system can be known. Allied health professionals are instrumental in the delivery of healthcare services to the society through direct patient care, working with other healthcare providers or through constant updating of their knowledge and skills.