Virtual care, shared care and HITH referrals

Virtual care technology is helping West Moreton Health expand its reach and provide more care closer to home. Telehealth and mobile-enabled care use videoconferencing technology to connect people in the community to specialist health expertise.

Shared care is an arrangement between a GP and a birthing hospital or other birth setting. Patients see GPs for some pregnancy appointments and also have appointments at the hospital in early and later pregnancy.

Hospital in the Home

Service information

Hospital in the Home (HITH) services have been developed to provide patients with a greater choice in their care, improve access to health services, equal or better care outcomes and improve efficiencies in service delivery.

The HITH team provides care for four distinct patient groups.

  • Home ward – care substitutes full hospital admission or a component of a hospital admission. Without an HITH service, the patient would be admitted to hospital for treatment in a traditional acute hospital bed. Each patient is identified as requiring treatment and/or monitoring during HITH episode of care. Governance is provided by dedicated HITH Consultant.
  • Day infusion – care is provided for patients requiring provision of medication or blood product where the administration or monitoring of infusions is not practical outside a hospital environment. Governance is provided by the HITH Consultant.
  • Home IV – care is provided for patients requiring longer term intravenous antibiotics. Patients in this category are sub-acute and no longer require daily intervention or close monitoring. Governance is provided by the Infectious Disease Physician.
  • Post acute care – care is provided for patients to facilitate earlier discharge where care is not available in the community. This may include complex post-acute wounds or short-term medication administration. This is a nurse led service and there is no medical governance provided.

Eligibility

  • A treating authorised practitioner agrees that care for a patient with an acute condition can be safely provided and managed outside of a traditional acute hospital bed.
  • The patient consents to transfer of care. The HITH referral form records patient's verbal consent to transfer of care.
  • Patient has no known allergy to medication prescribed during the HITH episode of care and the first dose of any intravenous medication has been given within the hospital.
  • Patient has access to a telephone with dial out facilities.
  • Patient lives in an area with mobile phone coverage.
  • Patient has access to a working refrigerator with suitable storage room (if required to store medications).

Referral pathway

  • Direct referrals from GP will be accepted – letter rather than referral form is acceptable. Direct referrals are only accepted if early review by HITH medical team is possible.
  • Referrals are via referral and phone call (phone call not required for routine day infusions).
  • Referrals for home ward, home IV and day infusion. Patients will only be accepted from the treating medical officer (General Practitioner, inpatient team or Emergency Department). Referrals for post acute care will be accepted form nursing staff and allied health.
  • Referrer should contact HITH Consultant by phone for all home ward, home IV and post acute care patients to enable assessment of suitability in relation to service capacity.
  • Referrer should make phone contact with HITH Consultant for all home ward and home IV patients to enable acceptance of care and effective clinical handover. Handover meets the National Safety and Quality Standards and includes a clinical treatment plan developed by the referring authorised practitioner.

Hospital in the Home referral form (PDF)

Contact information

Contact HITH Coordinator for all referrals except day infusions (this ensures service has capacity to provide care required).

HITH Coordinator

  • Phone 0407 386 692
    (7 am–7 pm)

HITH Consultant

  • Phone 0418 177 831
    (8.30 am–4 pm, Monday–Friday)
MeCare

Service information

MeCare is one of our programs built in partnership with Philips Healthcare to provide specialised support for people with challenging health issues and circumstances. The name stands for mobile enabled care and this means care that is not just in the hospital/health centre but wherever you are.

The program is delivered by a team of health professionals including doctors, nurses and other health professionals. The team works closely with GPs and other care providers to ensure that a wide range of health factors are monitored and enable informed care decisions in managing health conditions.

Eligibility

Patients must fit into the following criteria:

  • Have one or more of the following
    • heart failure
    • diabetes
    • COPD/Asthma
    • chronic kidney disease.
  • Resident within the WMH geographic area.
  • Have at least 3G connectivity at their homes.
  • Does the patient have stable mental health?
    (i.e. not actively psychotic or undergoing significant medication regime changes)
  • Is the patient a current user of illicit substances?
  • Does the patient have a history of admission to WMH hospital greater than three times a year for the last two years?

Referral pathway

Contact MeCare for all referrals