The Australian New Zealand Burn Association (ANZBA) burn rehabilitation course (BRC): an allied health collaboration

Ms Julia Kwiet1, Ms Rachel Edmondson2, Dr Zephanie  Tyack3, Ms Angela Thynne4, Ms Anne Darton5, Ms Nicola Clayton6, Ms Tracey Perrett7

1 NSW Health, NSLHD, Department of Social Work, Sydney, Australia, 2Department of Physiotherapy, RNSH, Sydney, Australia, 3Centre for Children’s Burns and Trauma Research, Children’s Health research Centre, , South Brisbane, Australia, 4Private Practice, Royal brisbane and Women’s Hospital, Brisbane, Australia, 5Agency for Clinnical Innovation, Statewide Burn Injury Service, Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney, Australia, 6Speech Pathology Department and Burns Unit, Concord Repatriation General Hospital, , Sydney, Australia, 7National Burn Centre, Middlemore Hospital, , Auckland, New Zealand


ANZBA nursing and medical burns management courses contribute considerably to improving burns care. However, no equivalent rehabilitation course to enhance recovery exists. In 2014, the collaborative development of the new ANZBA Allied Health Professional Guidelines demonstrated a commitment and willingness to support all health professionals utilising a bio-psychosocial approach to burn rehabilitation.


To develop an evidence and consensus based burns specific rehabilitation course for health professionals working with severe burn injury patients.


Planning commenced in 2015 for the development of an ANZBA burns rehabilitation course, designed specifically for allied health professionals, to better manage the complex physical and psychosocial rehabilitation needs of severe burn injury patients. This development process included the completion of an evidence-based resource manual with input from over twenty ANZBA members, training of five instructors in effective teaching methods, with ongoing communication with the ANZBA Board and Education Committee. Instructors of this new BRC course included representation from physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology and social work from burn units across Australia and New Zealand.


A pilot course was delivered in Brisbane (June 2018) and detailed feedback was sought from the participants who included consumer participants. Feedback from the pilot course allowed further refinement of the course content. The structure of the one-day course that resulted included an icebreaker activity to promote active participation throughout the day and a brief lecture, followed by multiple concurrent interactive small group sessions and rotating skill stations. Three courses are scheduled for 2019 with enrollments underway.


An evidence based resource manual and burns rehabilitation course has been developed, with engagement from over 80 allied health staff across Australia and New Zealand. This course is likely to contribute greatly towards allied health education, strengthening expertise across Australian and New Zealand to ensure the ongoing rehabilitation needs of patients with burns’ are better met.


Julia Kwiet is a Senior Social Worker and has more than 15 years clinical experience. She is currently in the role of Health Professional Educator and responsible for managing the ongoing professional development for the NSRHS social work staff as well as student placements. Julia has completed a master in Counselling through the University of NSW and is trained in EMDR and mindfulness.  In 2005 she was the successful applicant for a research fellowship through the NSW Institute of Psychiatry and in 2018 gained an ACI grant  for severe burn injury related QI.  Julia has a particular interest in education, trauma, psychosocial care and adopts a strength based recovery model of care.

NAHC Conferences

2007, Hobart (7th NAHC)

2009, Canberra (8th NAHC)

2012, Canberra (9th NAHC)

2013, Brisbane (10th NAHC)

2015, Melbourne (11th NAHC)

2017, Sydney (12th NAHC)

2019, Brisbane (13th NAHC)

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