Strengthening general practice and service provider capability and innovation building a contemporary patient centred primary health care strategy.
WQ Health Care Home
The Western Queensland Health Care Home (WQ HCH) program is a suite of self-evaluation, education, training, data analysis, and quality improvement tools and resources to help primary care practices operate efficiently and effectively.
Workshops are held each year and the 2021-22 year’s workshops focused on investigating the demographics of local communities, and how to integrate and utilise other local health and community services. The workshops blended theory, data, interactive, and practical components, and provided protected planning time for practices away from the busy day-to-day operations. Understanding practice data and populations provided a platform to look at ways to improve Chronic Disease management using the roles of Care Coordination and Team Based Care. The added benefit of the workshops was the ability for practice staff to network and meet likeminded people within their region.
Over 2021-22 the Practice Capability and Innovation Team delivered 12 Quality Improvement workshops to 18 Western Queensland Health Care Homes practices. The team visited 11 General Practices across the North West, Central West, and South West regions collaborating with 119 attendees.
Responses to attendance satisfaction surveys were positive, with 97% of participants indicating the learning objectives were met by the sessions.
Key to the success of the WQ HCH program is the ability of practices to utilise the tools and resources provided by WQPHN to drive continual quality improvement initiatives. As each year progresses, the practices have learnt and grown and implemented the skills and tools of the WQ HCH program into their Quality Improvement activities.
A key challenge for practices across Western Queensland continues to be the decline in GP and Nursing hours available to support the work required to ensure patients have access to proactive, planned and structured care.
Total GPs and Practice Nurse Professionals in General Practice Networks trending year on year:
Telehealth & Digital Health
WQPHN is engaging with all levels of Government and sector stakeholders to improve and accelerate the uptake of telehealth and digital health services in our region, ensuring the needs of remote Australians are considered when policy decisions are made.
Nearly 23 per cent of homes in Western Queensland have no access to the internet - investing in the digital infrastructure to support access to telehealth, online supports, and community, aged care and disability services is a priority.
In 2021-22, 100% of healthcare organisations were provided support to transition from NASH SHA-1 to SHA-2 certificates, allowing them to continue to access digital health platforms and tools, including My Health Record.
Purposeful engagement with the primary health care workforce on digital health news, updates, priorities and opportunities through The Monthly Megabyte, and our Digital Health and Integration newsletter.
We also maintain the Digital Health Help Desk, providing expert advice remotely and in person on key topics and programs such as My Health Record, Secure Messaging, Electronic Prescribing, Telehealth, and the Adaptors to Web Services Program.
This year we began work to improve access to Telehealth and After-Hours healthcare for people living in Residential Aged Care Facilities with a goal to increase access to the right care in the right place at the right time and reduce potentially preventable hospitalisations.
In 2021-22 there was 9,915 occasions of service via Telehealth.