This year, the Western Health Cancer Services Department conducted a project investigating how to streamline the referral process to ensure that patients with a new or suspected cancer are seen in a timely way in the appropriate outpatient clinic.
This project was conducted due to a finding that more than one patient per week presents to Western Health’s Emergency Department with a new cancer, but without symptoms that require Emergency Department care. Feedback from referrers also raised concerns with access to our outpatient clinics.
To address these gaps, we have developed the following new processes and initiatives:
- Referral Guidelines for Lung and Breast Cancer.
- Western Health Cancer Services Referral Procedures. These include:
- An outline of the most appropriate referral route for new cancer diagnoses via Outpatients.
- The process for referral and when referrers and patients can expect to be contacted.
- Contact numbers if referrers have queries about a referral.
- New streamlined referral triage processes.
The project has focused initially on lung and breast cancer with an aim to roll new initiatives out to all cancer streams if successful.
These new resources are available on the Western Health website here under ‘Cancer’.
The new processes will be trialed over the next 6 months. We welcome any feedback you may have to help us improve the system. Feedback can be provided to the project lead and project officer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disclaimer: This article was provided by Western Health. While every effort has been made to ensure the information is accurate, North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network does not warrant or represent the accuracy, currency and completeness of any information or material included within.