The Sydney North Health Network (SNHN) After Hours program is about improving access to primary health care in the after hours period so that people living in Sydney’s north can receive the right care, at the right time, in the right place.
As part of our response to improving access to after hours services for the community, we are working with health professionals and services to better coordinate and connect services, including the flow of information between service providers, to improve health outcomes. Below are two examples of our after hours activities in the region.
GP Health Talks at TAFE
New immigrants attend Settlement Classes at Hornsby, Meadowbank, St Leonards and Brookvale TAFE campuses. SNPHN incorporates health information into the classes (which have recently started up again for 2017), tailored for our CALD communities. The main topics of the presentations are:
- How to access General Practice
- What kinds of health services are appropriate from a GP
- Health assessments and preventative checks required as you get older
- My Health Record
- Importance of continuity of care with a regular GP and Pharmacist
- The difference between accessing Specialists / Allied Health services
- The difference between public hospital services and private health insurance
- After hours services available – who to call and when
Talks have been held in English, Mandarin and Tibetan, and they are often presented by local GPs who speak a variety of languages. Interpreters attend the talks as required.
Participants also receive magnets with after hours information for easy reference. Copies are on the After Hours page in eight different languages, including English.
Summary of 2016 GP Health Talks at TAFE for Early Settlement Classes
- Total Talks for the year: 16
- Total Participants: 375
- Participating TAFEs: Hornsby, Brookvale, St Leonards and Meadowbank
Extended Care Paramedics adopt Secure Messaging
Extended Care Paramedics (ECPs) in the Northern Sydney region are now sending referral and follow-up letters directly to GPs using HealthLink secure messaging, for clients seen by their service.
In the past, ECPs have provided patients with a treatment summary letter to give to their GPs at their next appointment following treatment. However, few GPs report having received these letters due to the patient having misplaced them or simply forgotten to take them. Secure messaging makes this process more efficient and effective for both the patient and GP.
The use of digital health technology via secure messaging will now enable the paramedics to transmit the summary letter directly into the clinical software of the patient’s nominated GP or practice following an episode of care. This letter can then simply be attached to the patient’s clinical record.
Sydney North PHN will be providing training and support to local GPs and Practice Managers to demonstrate how to receive and assign these communications within their clinical software systems. Webinars for both Best Practice and Medical Director will be made available on the SNPHN website, and face to face or phone support can also be offered to those practices seeking a demonstration. Please contact Deb Clark at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.