More than 300 electronic referrals have been made from GPs across Tasmania to participating hospital departments since April as part of a new eReferral trial.
The trial, which allows professionals to securely send referral communication between participating health care providers, is being lead by Primary Health Tasmania in collaboration with the Department of Health and the Tasmanian Health Service.
It is hoped the trial, which started with a small group of GPs, will be expanded statewide and include allied health, community specialists and the full range of hospital departments.
Primary Health Tasmania chief executive Phil Edmondson said eReferrals streamlined a process which had historically meant putting pen to paper and too often resulted in picking up the phone shortly after to clarify illegible writing on a fax scan.
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“The eReferral project began well before the coronavirus pandemic but I think it’s fair to say that now, more than ever, it’s clear that we need to support Tasmania’s health system to communicate in a fast, accurate and streamlined way,” Mr Edmondson said.
Health Minister Sarah Courtney said she hoped the speed and security of eReferrals would ease time pressures on the health workforce.
“Our health workforce goes above and beyond and this trial project is about supporting them so they can spend more time delivering quality care and less time chasing paper,” Ms Courtney said.
“We are looking forward to the results and evaluation of the trial which will guide our next steps in this exciting and innovative space.”