Complementary Health Therapists treat patients with physical, mental, spiritual and emotional needs by considering the whole person rather than focusing on specific symptoms and by using various therapies, techniques and practices.

A Bachelor Degree or higher is usually needed to work in this job. Registration or licensing may be required.

Tasks

  • assessing patients to determine the nature of the disorder, illness, problem or need by questioning, examining and observing
  • developing and implementing treatment plans using applications such as acupuncture, homoeopathic and herbal medicine, and dance, drama, hypnotic and music therapies
  • evaluating and documenting patients' progress through treatment plans
  • providing dietary and lifestyle advice and guidelines
  • prescribing natural medicines, such as herbal, mineral and animal extracts, to stimulate the body's capacity for self-healing

Job Titles

  • Acupuncturist
  • Homoeopath
  • Naturopath
  • Chinese, Traditional Chinese or, Oriental Medicine Practitioner
  • Other Complementary Health Therapists
  • Acupuncturist

    Treats disorders and illnesses by stimulating the body's defence mechanisms through inserting fine needles into the skin. Registration or licensing may be required.

  • Homoeopath

    Treats the body's immune and defence systems by assessing the whole person and using minute amounts of natural remedies made from substances such as plants, minerals and animal sources. Registration or licensing may be required.

  • Naturopath

    Treats internal health problems, metabolic disorders and imbalances through treatment of the whole person using natural therapies. Registration or licensing may be required.

  • Chinese, Traditional Chinese or, Oriental Medicine Practitioner

    Treats imbalances of energy flows through the body by assessing the whole person and using techniques and methods such as acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, massage, diet, exercise and breathing therapy. Registration or licensing may be required.

  • Other Complementary Health Therapists

    Includes Dance Therapist, Drama Therapist, Hypnotherapist, Music Therapist, Play Therapist

    Specialisations: Chinese Herbalist

Fast Facts

  • Avg. Weekly Pay

    Unavailable
  • Future Growth

    very strong
  • Skill Level

    Bachelor Degree or higher
  • Employment Size

    9,400
  • Unemployment

    below average
  • Male Share

    28.9%
  • Female Share

    71.1%
  • Full-Time Share

    53.5%

Find Vacancies

This is a small occupation employing 9400 workers. Over the past 5 years the number of jobs has grown strongly.
Very strong growth is expected in the future. New jobs and turnover from workers leaving may create between 5,001 and 10,000 job openings over the 5 years to 2020.

  • While there are jobs in many parts of Australia, New South Wales has a large share of Complementary Health Therapists.
  • They mainly work in: Health Care and Social Assistance; Retail Trade; and Manufacturing.
  • Part-time work is fairly common, but more than half work full-time. Full-time workers, on average, work 37.2 hours per week.
  • The workforce is fairly mature. The average age is 48 years (compared to 40 for all careers) and around 5 in 10 workers are aged 45 years or older.
  • Around 1 in 3 workers are male.
  • In 2016, the unemployment rate was below average.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Employment trend data to November 2015 and Department of Employment projections to 2020.
YearEmployment Level
20057100
20065600
20078000
20087700
20099300
20107900
20117600
20127600
20135700
20144800
20159400
202012400

Weekly Earnings

Full-time Earnings

All Careers Average

Weekly Earnings (before tax)

Source: ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015 cat. no. 6333.0. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsComplementary Health TherapistsAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earningsn/an/a

Hours

Weekly Hours Worked

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
CategoryComplementary Health TherapistsAll Jobs Average
Full-time43.069
Part-time57.030.8
Average Weekly Hours (full-time)44.640.2

Main Industries

Top Industries

Main Employing Industries (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Health Care and Social Assistance83.9
Retail Trade12.9
Manufacturing1.9
Other Services1.2
Other Industries0.1

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
StateComplementary Health TherapistsAll Jobs Average
NSW47.531.8
VIC19.525.5
QLD7.119.8
SA7.96.7
WA13.911.1
TAS4.02
NT0.01.1
ACT0.01.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
Age BracketComplementary Health TherapistsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.0-5.45.4
20-242.8-9.99.9
25-3418.9-23.323.3
35-4424.3-21.621.6
45-5421.7-21.121.1
55-5917.8-8.68.6
60-647.7-5.95.9
65 and Over6.9-3.73.7

Gender

Male Share

Female Share

Gender (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
CategoryComplementary Health TherapistsCategoryAll Jobs Average
Males22.8Males53.8
Females77.2Females46.1

Education Level

Top Education Levels

Highest Level of Education (% share)

Source: Based on ABS 2016 Survey of Education and Work (SEW).
Type of QualificationComplementary Health TherapistsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate0.0-8.58.5
Bachelor degree71.7-17.817.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma28.3-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV0.0-18.818.8
Year 120.0-18.618.6
Years 11 & 100.0-17.617.6
Below Year 100.0-8.08.0

A Bachelor Degree or higher is usually needed to work in this job. Registration or licensing is required.
If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job.
The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.

It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.

Employers look for Complementary Health Therapists who are caring and empathetic and can work well in a team, with the ability to communicate with a diverse range of people.

Knowledge

The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Medicine and Dentistry

    99% Important

    Diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

  2. Psychology

    94% Important

    Human behaviour and performance; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioural and affective disorders.

  3. Therapy and Counseling

    90% Important

    Diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and career counselling and guidance.

  4. Biology

    85% Important

    Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.

  5. Customer and Personal Service

    81% Important

    Customer and personal services. This includes understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

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Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Assisting and Caring for Others

    97% Important

    Providing personal assistance, medical attention, or emotional support to people such as co-workers, customers, or patients.

  2. Getting Information

    96% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  3. Making Decisions and Solving Problems

    90% Important

    Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.

  4. Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge

    90% Important

    Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.

  5. Documenting/Recording Information

    90% Important

    Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

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O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

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