8 July 2019

Children across Victoria aged 0-4 years account for more paediatric hospital emergency department admissions than any other age group. However, in many cases, they can be effectively cared for in general practice.

The statewide paediatric HealthPathways, written by GPs and for GPs, are now live and freely accessible. These Pathways are helping to relieve the pressure on emergency departments and saving time for clinicians across the state.

The Pathways support general practices provide evidence-based care across Victoria to:

  • Reduce unwarranted variations in care
  • Reduce inappropriate referrals to specialist paediatric services
  • Improve outcomes for children in Victoria

As part of this initiative, a series of interactive case-based education sessions were recently completed in practices across the North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network catchment. These sessions focused on putting the Pathways into practice, by working through a series of hypothetical cases and using the Pathways to solve clinical and referral problems.

Dr Scott Parsons demonstrating appropriate spacer technique.

Dr Scott Parsons demonstrating appropriate spacer technique.

Conditions covered in the sessions included:

  • Asthma
  • Wheeze in 1-5 year-olds
  • Constipation
  • Food allergy and intolerances

Over 50 GPs and practice nurses attended these sessions. Their feedback has been overwhelmingly positive:

“Very informative and useful!”

“Excellent education – particularly liked it being provided by a GP rather than a specialist, thank you for guidelines from a GPs perspective.”

“Informative +++, fantastic information, thank you.”

We thank all practices and participants for their enthusiasm to work collectively to improve paediatric health outcomes for Victoria’s youngest patients.

More information

HealthPathways Melbourne is a free, web-based tool with relevant, local and evidence-based information on the assessment and management of common clinical conditions, including referral guidance, clinical and patient resources.

To gain access or a demonstration of the pathways, please email: info@healthpathwaysmelbourne.org.au.

More information about the Statewide Paediatric HealthPathways project is available on the Victorian and Tasmanian Primary Health Network Alliance website.

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