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Open AccessArticle

Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Manual Therapy Service Utilization within the Australian Private Healthcare Setting

1
Australian Institute of Health Innovation, Macquarie University, Sydney 2109, Australia
2
Department of Chiropractic, Macquarie University, Sydney 2109, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Healthcare 2020, 8(4), 558; https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8040558
Received: 17 November 2020 / Revised: 10 December 2020 / Accepted: 11 December 2020 / Published: 13 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue COVID-19: Impact on Public Health and Healthcare)
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted a wide range of health services. This study aimed to quantify the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on manual therapy service utilization within the Australian private healthcare setting during the first half of 2020. Quarterly data regarding the number and total cost of services provided were extracted for each manual therapy profession (i.e., chiropractic, osteopathy, and physiotherapy) for the period January 2015 to June 2020 from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority. Time series forecasting methods were used to estimate absolute and relative differences between the forecasted and observed values of service utilization. An estimated 1.3 million (13.2%) fewer manual therapy services, with a total cost of AUD 84 million, were provided within the Australian private healthcare setting during the first half of 2020. Reduction in service utilization was considerably larger in the second quarter (21.7%) than in the first quarter (5.7%), and was larger in physiotherapy (20.6%) and osteopathy (12.7%) than in chiropractic (5.2%). The impact varied across states and territories, with the largest reductions in service utilization observed in New South Wales (17.5%), Australian Capital Territory (16.3%), and Victoria (16.2%). The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on manual therapy service utilization in Australia. The magnitude of the decline in service utilization varied considerably across professions and locations. The long-term consequences of this decline in manual therapy utilization remain to be determined. View Full-Text
Keywords: COVID-19; health services; cost; manual therapy; chiropractic; osteopathy; physiotherapy COVID-19; health services; cost; manual therapy; chiropractic; osteopathy; physiotherapy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Lystad, R.P.; Brown, B.T.; Swain, M.S.; Engel, R.M. Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Manual Therapy Service Utilization within the Australian Private Healthcare Setting. Healthcare 2020, 8, 558. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8040558

AMA Style

Lystad RP, Brown BT, Swain MS, Engel RM. Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Manual Therapy Service Utilization within the Australian Private Healthcare Setting. Healthcare. 2020; 8(4):558. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8040558

Chicago/Turabian Style

Lystad, Reidar P.; Brown, Benjamin T.; Swain, Michael S.; Engel, Roger M. 2020. "Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Manual Therapy Service Utilization within the Australian Private Healthcare Setting" Healthcare 8, no. 4: 558. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare8040558

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