8552.0 - Physiotherapy Services, Australia, 1997-98  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 31/08/1999   
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August 31, 1999
Embargoed 11:30am (AEST)

Females dominate physiotherapy profession

Australians are more likely to be treated by a female physiotherapist, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) in a new report on Physiotherapy Services.

In June 1998 there were 5,187 physiotherapists in private practice of which 65% were female. This equals one physiotherapist for every 3,615 people in Australia.

The gender imbalance was more evident with physiotherapists aged between 45 and 64 years as 76% of these practitioners were female. Most physiotherapists (71%), however, were aged between 25 and 44 years.

The spread of physiotherapists varied with Northern Territory having the smallest number (one physiotherapist per 9,500 people) while South Australia had the highest (one physiotherapist per 2,521 people).

In an average working week, Australian physiotherapists had 289,038 patient consultations, that is each physiotherapist dealt with 56 consultations in an average week.

Overall, the physiotherapy industry recorded an operating profit before tax of $93 million during 1997-98. This represented an operating profit margin of 25.7%. Wages and business profits resulted in a return per physiotherapist of $31,800 for 1997-98.

There were 3,242 physiotherapy practices in Australia, which employed 9,055 people and generated a total income of $364 million during 1997-98. However total expenses for the industry was $270 million, most of which (54%) was labour costs.

The average labour cost per employee was a low $22,900, which reflected the high proportion (61%) of persons employed in the industry who worked on a part-time basis.

Further details are in Physiotherapy Services, Australia, 1997-98 (cat. no. 8552.0) available from ABS bookshops. A summary of the publication is also available on this site. The ABS encourages media organisations with online news services to link to the summary. Please phone us if you need assistance to do this.