Chronic Pain Telehealth Model

Aim

The aim of this project was to pilot a telehealth platform and chronic pain toolkit to facilitate the ‘business as usual’ use of videoconferencing between specialist pain services and general practice and primary care.

Benefits

The pilot project delivered benefits to the patient, the clinicians in the service and in primary care, and the system as a whole. These benefits were realised in the following ways:

  • reduced travel time for the patient
  • reduction in cancellation of appointments
  • increased efficiency for clinical staff
  • ready access to expertise for the GPs.

Referring clinicians were more likely to refer a second patient following a successful telehealth intervention. Compliance with the essential documentation and process aspects of telehealth were reported to be 100%. Only three ACI supported sessions were required per site.

Summary

Telehealth via HDA videocall© provides a feasible modality to deliver specialist services in chronic pain. The toolkit developed to support the process, is relevant and easy to use. HDA videocall© enabled clinicians to access GPs and patients in their own home with good outcomes in the majority of cases.

Background

In 2015, a six month pilot study evaluating the use of telehealth as a modality for chronic pain management was conducted at two of the NSW chronic pain clinics; the Children’s Hospital Westmead and Orange Hospital. The two hospitals agreed to participate believing that telehealth would assist them to improve access to specialist multidisciplinary services for their patients who lived in rural and remote NSW. More particularly, they sought to provide improved support to the clinicians who manage these patients in the community.

Telehealth, was found to be a feasible and effective model to deliver chronic pain services into primary care and patients’ homes in NSW. The implementation support provided by ACI and the use of videocall© were found to be significant enablers of the model, in association with a toolkit and workflow support. This model will be continued to be spread across the ACI Pain Management Network, on the successful background of the pilot project. This will facilitate access to specialist expertise in the Murrumbidgee, Southern and Far West LHDs for people who live with chronic pain.

Partnerships

Details of who we have worked with to deliver the initiative to the health system: 

  • Western NSW
  • Sydney Children’s Hospital Westmead
  • Ministry of Health
  • Healthdirect Australia

Key Dates

Pilot Sites

Sydney Children's Hospital NetworkThe Children's Hospital at Westmead

The Children’s Hospital Westmead was a pilot site from June 2015- December 2015.


Western NSW Local Health DistrictOrange Health Service

Western NSW LHD (Orange Hospital Pain clinic) was a pilot site from June 2015- December 2015.


Implementation Sites

Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health DistrictNepean Hospital

All NSW pain clinics will be offered this modality over the next twelve months.


Northern Sydney Local Health DistrictGreenwich Hospital

All NSW pain clinics will be offered this modality over the next twelve months.


South Eastern Sydney Local Health DistrictPrince of Wales Hospital

All NSW pain clinics will be offered this modality over the next twelve months.


St Vincent's Health NetworkSt Vincent's Hospital

All NSW pain clinics will be offered this modality over the next twelve months.


Related Initiatives

Further Details

Contact

Jenni Johnson
Manager, Pain Management Network
jenni.johnson@health.nsw.gov.au
02 9464 4636

Chris Shipway
Director, Primary Care and Chronic Services
chris.shipway@health.nsw.gov.au
02 9464 4603

Page Top | Added: 25 February 2016 | Last modified: 25 February 2016

ACI
Status:
Contact:
Jenni Johnson
Manager, Pain Management Network
Email
02 9464 4636
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