Queensland Health and Alcidion reveal success of state-wide Referral Service Directory
In 2016, Queensland Health facilities received nearly two million referrals for outpatient services. Despite the acknowledged importance of having high quality referrals in the transfer and continuity of care, challenges remained in the referral process, which was impacting waiting times.
Queensland Health’s 16 Hospital and Health Services (HHSs) needed a solution that provided definition and structure to streamline the referral processes. Queensland Health were also looking for a solution which would be scalable across the State whilst still delivering what was required at the local HHS level.
The integrated Referral Management Solution (iRMS) program initiative was created to address the problem, and Alcidion and their enterprise identification solution partner NextGate, signed a contract with Queensland Health to roll out the first component – the Referral Services Directory (RSD).
The RSD provides the linkage between the referral system at a GP practice and the specialty service provided by a HHS, holding detailed information about each HHS (disciplines, conditions treated, services offered and capabilities, location, etc.) to help GPs and their systems identify the most appropriate HHS to direct their patients.
The benefits identified from the implementation of the RSD for the HHSs, GPs and Queensland Health are:
Streamlining and modernising referral processing
Allowing referrers to easily find the most appropriate HHS for their patients care requirements
Improving and standardising information included in referrals so that the quality and speed of triage is improved and more effective patient care can be planned and delivered
Providing referrers with the ability to better assess waitlist times and direct referrals accordingly, therefore improving overall system efficiency and delivering better patient outcomes
Facilitating better communication with the patient’s usual GP regardless of the Provider initiating the referral
Reducing the re-work and inefficiency associated with incomplete referral details
Improving the ability of referrers to access status information and receive updates about their referrals
Providing information that will improve equity and consistency in accessing services