Electronic reporting of allied health cancer care interventions in regional Queensland

Mrs Martine  Waters1, Mr Neil Brebner1, Ms Alicia Chaplain2

1Queensland Health, Brisbane, Australia, 2Allied Health Professions Office Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

There is little evidence documenting skill set requirements for allied health cancer care clinicians in regional areas.  Routine data collection counts occasions of service, but lacks information about interventions carried out. The aim of this project was to electronically capture the interventions undertaken by regional allied health cancer care clinicians, to quantify task frequency and identify potential skill sharing capabilities between clinicians.

Partnering with two regional Queensland public cancer care centres and the Allied Health Professions Office Queensland, a subset of 42 SNOWMED_CT_AU medical terminology intervention codes were selected and incorporated into the allied health cancer care services routine activity capture information system MOSAIQ®.

Customised reports were developed to describe the type and frequency of clinical interventions by facility and discipline. Focus groups were held with clinicians to gain feedback on strategies to improve the accuracy and process of data collection.

Sixteen allied health clinicians from 6 disciplines across 3 facilities electronically recorded descriptive intervention tasks as part of routine activity data collection.  Interim analysis of a one month data snapshot showed that nutrition therapy, screening, counselling and lymphoedema management were the most frequent tasks undertaken.   There was evidence of skill sharing between disciplines with 21 of the interventions (50%) recorded as being delivered by more than one discipline group.

This detailed data informs team leaders of the recruitment attributes required in their facility and guides skill succession planning to increase capacity of existing human resources. The findings highlight a potential for clinicians to gain experience in required skills in a non-cancer setting. Future steps for this project will include: collecting a 6 month data set; validating the task list within a broader context of cancer Statewide; understanding cancer specific skillsets and knowledge acquisition pathways; and understanding barriers and enablers to clinician confidence in the application of core skills in a cancer setting.


Martine has been an accredited practicing dietitian since 2000. She has an extensive clinical background in both metro hospitals and regional centres including rural outreach. Martine is currently studying clinical redesign and works as a workforce development Officer for Cancer Care. She has collaborated with Allied health Professions Office Queensland and regional cancer care facilities to implement and pilot electronic data capture of allied health intervention terminology in cancer care to inform local workforce planning. Martine holds a chair on the Statewide Cancer Network Executive Steering Committee and through a statewide allied health clinical cancer care reference group, she focuses on professional collaboration between HHS’s to develop pathways and infrastructure to facilitate consistent clinical standards promoting improved service integration for patients.

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