Spotlight on pelvic health for World Physiotherapy Day

SESLHD celebrated World Physiotherapy Day (8 September) this week, highlighting a team of specialists who deliver pelvic health physiotherapy services at the Royal Hospital for Women.

Women who come to The Royal seeking care for pelvic health conditions have the pleasure of being greeted and cared for by an exceptional team of skilful and nurturing clinicians, and passionate health advocates.

One very special staff member amongst the team of physiotherapists is Hannah Graetz. Hannah is a Senior Pelvic Health Physiotherapist, and describes herself as a passionate clinician, educator, budding researcher and vocal advocate and change agent for improving women’s health services.

“It’s such a privilege to do what I do. The courage women have to share their stories about highly intimate aspects of their lives, such as bladder and bowel or sexual function never ceases to inspire me,” Ms Graetz said.

“The high prevalence and burden of these disorders that significantly affect people’s lives and the largely inexpensive but highly effective strategies we have as physiotherapists to treat these disorders drives my passion for the work we do.”

Chronic pelvic health disorders continues to be an overlooked but important public health issue, according to Ms Graetz.

“This is what drives my passion today – to build our under-recognised health service and workforce so that women don’t continue to spend nine years suffering before they access the right care.”

Pelvic health physiotherapy services at the Royal Hospital for Women remain operational during the COVID-19 pandemic, continuing to see people across all life stages and from a range of backgrounds who experience socially isolating, stigmatising and heavily burdensome conditions.

“Every woman we see has a story, some may not have shared it with anyone before, or may have shared without receiving validation,” Ms Graetz said.

“Each day, I’m gifted the opportunity to validate their experience and to work with them to find their voice. What could be more special than that.”

Pictured: Royal Hospital for Women pelvic health physiotherapy team.

Royal Hospital for Women pelvic health physiotherapy team