Streamlining Community Referral Management- piloting a centralised triage process for Community Allied Health Teams

Martha Sorensen1, Ann Gregory1

1Ccdhb, Wellington, New Zealand

Background
One community service, three teams separated by geography managing and prioritising referrals differently across each site- would moving to a centralised triage service improve how referrals are managed to improve care in the community?

Method/results
A small triage team of clinicians from different professions was set up within existing resources. Clinical guidelines to support triage and a consistent referral management process were developed.
Referrals were managed in a “front loaded” way with phone calls to the majority of clients within 48 hours of receiving a referral; to clarify the clients view of their needs and provide education around the service and what to expect. The aim was to increase the speed and accuracy of how referrals were directed and prioritised.
Numerous rapid cycles of PDSA were completed as the pilot continued. Initial evaluation at 4 months resulted in the model being accepted as the new way of working for an extended pilot; staffing resources were allocated and triage clinician roles were formally recruited to. The pilot is continuing with multiple on-going work streams to improve prioritising, workload allocation and early response work.

We will present the key process and clinical changes and what effect these have had on service delivery.


Biography:

Bio to come.

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