What factors determine healthcare professionals’ (HCPs) acceptance of mobile devices for telehealth: A qualitative study conducted in Queensland, Australia

Vasundhara Rani Sood1, Prof. Raj Gururajan2, Dr. Abdul Hafeez Baig3

 

1 USQ, Toowoomba, 4350, Qld, Vasundhara.Rani@usq.edu.au

2 USQ, Toowoomba, 4350, Qld, Raj. Gururajan@usq.edu.au

3 USQ, Toowoomba, 4350, Qld, Abdul.Hafeez-Baig@usq.edu.au

 

Background

The introduction of telehealth has transformed the way of health delivery. Using telehealth, travel time and distance barriers are virtually eliminated for patients who live in remote areas where access to a hospital or clinician is limited (Coach 2013). Despite the various benefits of telehealth, the static model of telehealth services is preferred globally. In Australia, for telehealth consultations, the patients arrive at the health facility 30 minutes before the teleconsultation begins so that staff can take the necessary observations and can send the results to the hospital, even though mobile device based telehealth has potential to monitor patients in the home bed side environment. Yet most of mobile device based telehealth services are used in text messaging and in calling globally. The use of mobile device based telehealth services in many health activities such as telemedicine, patients’ records, treatment and monitoring is slow. Tamrat and Kachnowski (2012) claimed sustainable adoption of prenatal and neonatal mobile device based telehealth services remains under-developed.  Therefore, the aim of this research is to explore the perceptions and experiences of health care professionals’ (HCPs) for the acceptance of mobile devices in telehealth.

 

Methods

This research is conducted using the qualitative approach. Six focus group discussions, each group having 5-7 members and 2 interview were used to collect qualitative data. The target population was healthcare professionals such as occupational therapists, physiotherapists, dietitians and oral health practioners involved with the provision of telehealth services.

 

Results

In Queensland, health care professionals intention, self-efficacy, compatibility, relative advantages, education and training, management support, network coverage, privacy and security,  resource issues, trialability, age and experience with technology use were found to be important factors for the use of mobile devices whereas social influences, functional features of mobile devices and complexity were found to be conflicting factors among various HCPs for the use of mobile devices in the Australian telehealth environment.

 

Discussion

This study findings add to the stream of knowledge and provided factors that has policy an empirical implications. In policy and practice terms, this study makes a significant contribution towards an understating of factors for the use of mobile devices in telehealth. These factors can serve as a guide to policy makers and mangers to implement mobile devices in telehealth.  Further, the results obtained from this research study can be applied in other states of Australia and the rest of the world to understand the use of mobile devices in the telehealth environment. The paper also indicated age and experience as moderating variables which can further be considered and can be investigated in other studies such as survey.  Further, the factors and the items obtained in this research study can be used to design a survey questionnaire to conduct this research study using the quantitative approach.

Vasundhara is a PhD candidate in health informatics research at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ), School of Management and Enterprise. Vasundhara graduated from the Himachal Pradesh University (HPU), Shimla, India with a master’s of technology in computer science. Her research interests are health care utilization, quality, outcomes and communication. In addition to pursuing her PhD, she has been working in the BELA department of USQ as a causal staff. She has also worked as an assistant professor in HPU. During her PhD she has also presented her research in ACIS 2015 and ECIS 2016 top ranked conferences in information system. Vasundhara has also published a book chapter with IGI publication for the Healthcare Administration and Management book.

Every referral is a patient with a problem and a doctor who needs assistance

Jane Connolly1, Lex Lucas2, Vicki Sheedy3

 

1 ACRRM, GPO Box 2507, Brisbane, QLD, 4001, j.connolly@acrrm.org.au

2 ACRRM, GPO Box 2507, Brisbane, QLD, 4001, l.lucas@acrrm.org.au

3 ACRRM, GPO Box 2507, Brisbane, QLD, 4001,v.sheedy@acrrm.org.au

 

ACRRM Tele-Derm service is designed to provide rural doctors with rapid access to specialist dermatology advice and receives approximately 500 cases annually from rural doctors seeking assistance using a telehealth store and forward model.

This presentation will show the impact an online advice service can have on rural health services through supporting the rural generalist to treat their patients locally, improve their knowledge and skills in an environment of support and encouragement to operate at the top of their licence.

Skin conditions account for 14.8 out of every 100 patient encounters in general practice and 10.4% of the total reasons for encounter, making skin conditions one of the most common presentations in Australian general practice.[1]

Skin disorders can be chronic, painful, visually distressing, life altering and at worse cause death, however long waiting lists and large distances to travel are disincentives for patients to seek medical assistance.

Results from a recent survey to ascertain the impact the service was having in reducing the need for patients to be referred to a dermatologist showed that only 10% of the complex dermatology cases were not resolved locally with the support of Tele-Derm and required a referral to a specialist dermatologist.

The Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine Tele-Derm service is a store and forward teledermatology service, free for all Australian rural doctors.  Funded by the Australian Government, Department of Health Rural Health Outreach Fund the service has been operational for twelve years.

In addition to responding to cases submitted for advice, the Tele-Derm dermatologists provide education material in the form of ‘case of the week’ (grand rounds style) and education cases to the 2700 online users on a weekly basis.  Tele-Derm hosts an encyclopaedia of dermatological conditions based on previous submissions to the service. Regular quizzes, discussion forums, journal article appraisals, and didactic articles and video presentations on important dermatological topics are also available.

Tele-Derm provides a safe environment of participation and collaboration where experiences amongst training and trained, isolated rural doctors are shared in a ‘community of practice’ to improve the care provided in rural and remote communities.

[1] Britt H, Charles J, Henderson J, et al. General practice activity in Australia 2000–01 to 2009–10 10 year data tables. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare; 2010.

Can Occupational Therapy hand assessment and treatment sessions be conducted via Telehealth?

Tess Worboys1, Melinda Brassington2, Elizabeth Ward3, Petrea Cornwell

 

1 Occupational Therapy, Charleville Hospital, South West HHS, PO Box 219, Queensland, 4470, tess.worboys@health.qld.gov.au

2 Occupational Therapy, Charleville Hospital, South West HHS, PO Box 219, Queensland, 4470, melindapetkov@hotmail.com

3 Centre for Functioning and Health Research, Metro South HHS and The University of Queensland, PO Box 6053, Buranda, Queensland, 4102, liz.ward@uq.edu.au

4 Allied Health Research Collaborative, Metro North HHS, and Menzies health Institute of Queensland, Griffith University, 627 Rode Rd, Chermside, Queensland, 4032, Petrea.cornwell@health.qld.gov.au

 

Background: Injuries to the upper limb are amongst the most common to the body, accounting for approximately 50% of all injuries. For individuals living in rural and remote areas, access to specialist services for hand surgery and initial rehabilitation often requires travel to metropolitan or larger regional centres. Telehealth offers a solution to assist delivery of Occupational Therapy (OT) services for hand therapy in rural and remote locations, however there is currently no evidence to validate this service. The current study aimed to determine the level of agreement between a Telehealth OT (T-OT) and a Face-to-face OT (FTF-OT) during a hand assessment and treatment session and explore patient and clinician satisfaction.

Methods: Participants were recruited from the cohort of adult patients referred with a hand injury to the OT Department of Charleville, St. George and Roma Hospitals, within the South West Hospital and Health Service. Eighteen (18) patients were assessed simultaneously by a T-OT and FTF-OT via videoconferencing. An Allied health assistant (AHA) assisted with the collection of objective measures at the patient end. Clinicians assessed patients across a range of objective measures, subjective scales and patient reported information. Minimal level of percent exact agreement (PEA) between T-OT and FTF-OT was set at ≥ 80%.

Results: Level of agreement for all objective measures (dynamometer/pinch gauge reading, goniometer flexion, goniometer extension, circumference in millimetres) ranged between 82-100%PEA. Clinician judgements for scar and general limb observations were 82-100%PEA. Assessment of exercise compliance showed 80-100%PEA. Documentation of patient’s pain severity and sensitivity location were 100%PEA. Ratings of activities of daily living (QuickDASH) was 89%PEA. The multiple Global Ratings of Change scales (GROC) collected were ≥95%PEA. Patient and clinician satisfaction was high. There were 3 instances where visual issues impacted the session.

Discussion: Clinical decisions made via telehealth were comparable to a traditional clinical session model. Consumers were also satisfied, therefore supporting the potential for implementing a telehealth model of hand therapy in a regional/rural setting.

What factors determine healthcare professionals’ (HCPs) acceptance of mobile devices for telehealth: A qualitative study conducted in Queensland, Australia

Vasundhara Rani Sood1, Prof. Raj Gururajan2, Dr. Abdul Hafeez Baig3

 

1 USQ, Toowoomba, 4350, Qld, Vasundhara.Rani@usq.edu.au

2 USQ, Toowoomba, 4350, Qld, Raj. Gururajan@usq.edu.au

3 USQ, Toowoomba, 4350, Qld, Abdul.Hafeez-Baig@usq.edu.au

 

Background

The introduction of telehealth has transformed the way of health delivery. Using telehealth, travel time and distance barriers are virtually eliminated for patients who live in remote areas where access to a hospital or clinician is limited (Coach 2013). Despite the various benefits of telehealth, the static model of telehealth services is preferred globally. In Australia, for telehealth consultations, the patients arrive at the health facility 30 minutes before the teleconsultation begins so that staff can take the necessary observations and can send the results to the hospital, even though mobile device based telehealth has potential to monitor patients in the home bed side environment. Yet most of mobile device based telehealth services are used in text messaging and in calling globally. The use of mobile device based telehealth services in many health activities such as telemedicine, patients’ records, treatment and monitoring is slow. Tamrat and Kachnowski (2012) claimed sustainable adoption of prenatal and neonatal mobile device based telehealth services remains under-developed.  Therefore, the aim of this research is to explore the perceptions and experiences of health care professionals’ (HCPs) for the acceptance of mobile devices in telehealth.

 

Methods

This research is conducted using the qualitative approach. Six focus group discussions, each group having 5-7 members and 2 interview were used to collect qualitative data. The target population was healthcare professionals such as occupational therapists, physiotherapists, dietitians and oral health practioners involved with the provision of telehealth services.

 

Results

In Queensland, health care professionals intention, self-efficacy, compatibility, relative advantages, education and training, management support, network coverage, privacy and security,  resource issues, trialability, age and experience with technology use were found to be important factors for the use of mobile devices whereas social influences, functional features of mobile devices and complexity were found to be conflicting factors among various HCPs for the use of mobile devices in the Australian telehealth environment.

 

Discussion

This study findings add to the stream of knowledge and provided factors that has policy an empirical implications. In policy and practice terms, this study makes a significant contribution towards an understating of factors for the use of mobile devices in telehealth. These factors can serve as a guide to policy makers and mangers to implement mobile devices in telehealth.  Further, the results obtained from this research study can be applied in other states of Australia and the rest of the world to understand the use of mobile devices in the telehealth environment. The paper also indicated age and experience as moderating variables which can further be considered and can be investigated in other studies such as survey.  Further, the factors and the items obtained in this research study can be used to design a survey questionnaire to conduct this research study using the quantitative approach.

Vasundhara is a PhD candidate in health informatics research at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ), School of Management and Enterprise. Vasundhara graduated from the Himachal Pradesh University (HPU), Shimla, India with a master’s of technology in computer science. Her research interests are health care utilization, quality, outcomes and communication. In addition to pursuing her PhD, she has been working in the BELA department of USQ as a causal staff. She has also worked as an assistant professor in HPU. During her PhD she has also presented her research in ACIS 2015 and ECIS 2016 top ranked conferences in information system. Vasundhara has also published a book chapter with IGI publication for the Healthcare Administration and Management book.

Reflections on using telehealth in home modification practice with clients with newly acquired spinal cord injury in Queensland – the advantages and the challenges

Jamie Matveyeff, home modification service coordinator 1, Kati Graham, occupational therapist2

1 LifeTec Australia, PO Box 3241, Newmarket, Queensland 4051, jamiematveyeff@lifetec.org.au

2 LifeTec Australia, PO Box 3241, Newmarket, Queensland 4051, katigraham@lifetec.org.au

 

The Spinal Cord Injuries Response (SCIR) program assists people with a newly acquired spinal injury to transition from the Princess Alexandra Hospital in Brisbane back to their community by providing a range of services and supports such as care, equipment and home modifications.  Over the past 3 years, LifeTec has been coordinating the delivery and review of any home modification requirements for clients who are discharged to their own homes in any location in Queensland.

As this is a state-wide program, it has been essential for LifeTec to utilise mainstream web-based and portable video call technologies in our home modifications practice, to ensure that an equitable, timely and cost effective service is provided to all clients regardless of their discharge location. These technologies are used by the program coordinator, the building contractor, the occupational therapists and the client and their family.  Using real-time videoconferencing programs enables the client to more actively engage in the home modification process and often, it is the first opportunity for them to see their home, some of their family members and their pets following their injury. It enables the client to be central to any home modification decisions required. We see it as essential that our clients are involved in this process as early as possible to facilitate a client-centred framework of practice and assist them to prepare for life when they return home.

People attending this presentation will learn about our current telehealth practices and the tools we use for this program, how we have successfully implemented a telehealth service that links government, non-government and private parties, how we have overcome some of the challenges of delivering a clinical service remotely, the positive outcomes and some of the lessons learnt.

The geographic distribution of patients receiving treatment

Phillip Greenup1

1 Queensland Health, Level 2, 15 Butterfield Street, Herston, Queensland, 4006, phil.greenup@health.qld.gov.au

 

Individuals living in regional and remote Queensland have been reported to suffer from preventable cancers at rates higher than those living in major cities.  Lifestyle factors such as: increased rates of tobacco consumption; poorer access to fruit and vegetables; and a greater proportion of occupations that require sun exposure are often offered as explanations for this imbalance.  Less often considered is whether the amount of cancer treatment provided to patients in regional and remote Queensland is reflective of the incidence rate in those regions, compared to the amount of cancer treatment provided to patients in major cities.

The Queensland Remote Chemotherapy Supervision guide (QReCS), developed by the Central Integrated Regional Cancer Service (CIRCS) has been adopted nationally as the standard in remote administration of chemotherapy under telehealth supervision.  As well as demonstrating reductions in service delivery cost, the QReCS model facilitates  increased capacity of regional and remote health facilities to provide more suitable oncology treatment closer to the patients home..

Prior to investing funds in the expansion of the QReCS model, a data gathering exercise was undertaken to determine the current volume of non-admitted patient oncology services reported by public (Queensland Health) and private providers as well as the locations in which the recipients of this treatment live.  The results will be used to determine whether increasing the capacity of public providers of health services in regional and remote Queensland to provide more suitable oncology services had a positive effect on the rate in which this treatment was sought.

Among the findings of the exercise is that private providers of oncology services are largely concentrated in major cities, suggesting that Queensland Health may shoulder the majority of responsibility for rural and remote populations.  Also revealed is that patients in regional and remote Queensland receive less treatment per person than patients in major cities despite experiencing a higher rate of incidence.  These results may underscore the importance of Queensland Health, to continue to invest in innovative solutions such as the QReCS model to ensure suitable treatment is available particularly in regional and remote Queensland.

Reducing the tyranny of distance for health professionals working in regional and remote Queensland

Pammie Ellem.1

1 Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service, P.O.Box 34, Bundaberg, 4670.

 

Key Words: Telehealth, regional and rural, professional support, isolation.

Introduction:

Specialist nurse positions, for example, Specialist Breast Care Nurses  (SBCNs) working across regional and remote Queensland struggle to receive adequate peer support and professional development because of the reduced numbers of employees in the isolated locations where they are employed. Specialist positions prefer to network with their speciality to gain knowledge, support and create strong referral patterns for the betterment of patient care. (Jones et al., 2010. & Black and Farmer, 2013.) In the absence of regular peer support, emotional burnout and high staff turnover is a likely outcome. (Mills, Birks and Hegney, 2010)

Objectives / Aims:

The objective of this presentation is to highlight the use of telehealth to connect health professionals together, thereby increasing peer support and improving patient care. This has been achieved by developing a model of support for SBCNs which is transferrable to other specialist health care modalities. The model incorporates the use of telehealth, phone and face to face contact allowing regular monthly meetings to be attended.  The meetings are designed to reduce the isolation that the nurses experience and also incorporate CPE points for professional development.

Description / methodology.

A study of SBCNs has been conducted using Participatory Action Research methodology to ensure the outcome was owned and driven by the nurses themselves and therefore relevant to their speciality practice. Group membership was defined by the participants thus creating a strong sense of trust within the group. Telehealth enabled the nurses who are a significant physical distance away to participate regularly regardless of their location. Nurses not employed by QLD Health were able to access QLD Health facilities with their colleagues.

Results / Outcomes.

The nurses participating in the study provided a substantial amount of evidence through semi structured interviews that demonstrate the value of the support group. Furthermore, it has enabled nurses who service an area that spans more than 409,000 square km and has a population of 326,000 people, the ability to get to know and trust each other. Once trust was established, referrals between the nurses increased which resulted in better patient outcomes and seamless care. Additionally by using Telehealth technology between peers, some participants who were initially resistant are now embracing Telehealth for their patient consultations when required. Many of the nurses in this study knew of each other but had not been able to interact on a regular basis. Now they are well known to each other.

Conclusion.

Telehealth has closed the gap of isolation for regional and remote nurses working in isolated conditions. This model of professional development and support utilising telehealth can now be adopted for other specialities reducing the isolation previously experienced which reduces the chance of emotional burnout. If the effects of isolation can be reduced, staff retention and patient services will improve for regional and rural Queensland. Telehealth is the way forward for Australian healthcare workers.

Telerheumatology – Patient perspectives on using telemedicine for the management of inflammatory arthritis

S Devadula1,2, H Benham3,4

1 Rheumatology Advanced Trainee, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Woolloongabba, QLD,Australia

2 Associate Lecturer, University of Queensland, Brisbane,QLD,Australia

3 Staff Specialist Rheumatologist, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Woolloongabba, QLD,Australia

4 NHMRC Research Fellow, Translational Research Institute, Woolloongabba, QLD,Australia

 

Background

Telemedicine is the use of advanced telecommunication technologies to exchange health information and provide health care services across geographic, time, social and cultural barriers. Telemedicine offers the potential to utilize new technologies to provide better access to health care including access to specialist services that might otherwise not be available without extensive travel. Research from the early 1990s has confirmed that telemedicine is an efficient mode of quality healthcare delivery, for patients who are unable to access health care due to geographical and/or personal resource barriers.

For telemedicine to be effective, it must increase access to care, while providing health services that simulate key activities for adequate clinical assessment, such as a history and physical examination. A limitation in the existing telemedicine literature is the lack of studies examining patient acceptability and perspectives of telemedicine encounters. These go beyond ‘patient satisfaction with a telehealth service’, traditionally viewed as easier access to specialists, reduced travel time and financial savings. Patient perspectives are crucial to allow the development of patient centered telerheumatology care.

Objectives

To execute research project that will (1) enable providers to gain an understanding of the patients’ perspectives of the quality attributes of telerheumatology for the management of inflammatory arthritis; (2) investigate the relevance and significance of differential patient perspectives and; (3) work towards strategic improvements in the delivery of telerheumatology, targeting better health care access and patient outcomes.

Aims

1)To perform a cross sectional prospective quantitative and qualitative research study examining patient perspectives of telerheumatology service at Princess Alexandra Hospital to the “ hub sites” of Toowoomba, Ipswich, Beaudesert and Roma Hospitals.

2) Utilise the data to develop a patient centred framework for the coordinated delivery of telerheumatology.

Methods

The study progresses in two phases. During the quantitative phase, all the patients with inflammatory arthritis reviewed in the telerheumatology clinics will be invited to participate in a patient survey broadly covering their perspectives on quality of care delivered, advantages and disadvantages, preferences for telehealth versus face to face appointments, physician patient interaction, cultural barriers/ facilitators and willingness to participate in telerheumatology mediated delivery of patient education.

During the qualitative phase, selected patients who have consented to being contacted, will be invited to participate in small focus group sessions to provide data on patient centred telerheumatology. The focus groups will be lead by a research moderator. The assessments are based on previous qualitative designs.

Significance

There is extensive evidence that telehealth can be cost saving, time saving as well as patient satisfying. Our study aids to provide an evidence for a telerheumatology based approach to improve current models of care targeting rural and regional Australians.

Disclosures

S Devadula is the Registrar Bursary Grant Recipient from Arthritis Queensland 2015.

Every referral is a patient with a problem and a doctor who needs assistance

Jane Connolly1, Lex Lucas2, Vicki Sheedy3

1 ACRRM, GPO Box 2507, Brisbane, QLD, 4001, j.connolly@acrrm.org.au

2 ACRRM, GPO Box 2507, Brisbane, QLD, 4001, l.lucas@acrrm.org.au

3 ACRRM, GPO Box 2507, Brisbane, QLD, 4001,v.sheedy@acrrm.org.au

 

ACRRM Tele-Derm service is designed to provide rural doctors with rapid access to specialist dermatology advice and receives approximately 500 cases annually from rural doctors seeking assistance using a telehealth store and forward model.

This presentation will show the impact an online advice service can have on rural health services through supporting the rural generalist to treat their patients locally, improve their knowledge and skills in an environment of support and encouragement to operate at the top of their licence.

Skin conditions account for 14.8 out of every 100 patient encounters in general practice and 10.4% of the total reasons for encounter, making skin conditions one of the most common presentations in Australian general practice.[1]

Skin disorders can be chronic, painful, visually distressing, life altering and at worse cause death, however long waiting lists and large distances to travel are disincentives for patients to seek medical assistance.

Results from a recent survey to ascertain the impact the service was having in reducing the need for patients to be referred to a dermatologist showed that only 10% of the complex dermatology cases were not resolved locally with the support of Tele-Derm and required a referral to a specialist dermatologist.

The Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine Tele-Derm service is a store and forward teledermatology service, free for all Australian rural doctors.  Funded by the Australian Government, Department of Health Rural Health Outreach Fund the service has been operational for twelve years.

In addition to responding to cases submitted for advice, the Tele-Derm dermatologists provide education material in the form of ‘case of the week’ (grand rounds style) and education cases to the 2700 online users on a weekly basis.  Tele-Derm hosts an encyclopaedia of dermatological conditions based on previous submissions to the service. Regular quizzes, discussion forums, journal article appraisals, and didactic articles and video presentations on important dermatological topics are also available.

Tele-Derm provides a safe environment of participation and collaboration where experiences amongst training and trained, isolated rural doctors are shared in a ‘community of practice’ to improve the care provided in rural and remote communities.

[1] Britt H, Charles J, Henderson J, et al. General practice activity in Australia 2000–01 to 2009–10 10 year data tables. Canberra: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare; 2010.

Support needs of rural and remote clinicians providing non-critical emergency care in Queensland

Pauline Calleja 1, Leeanne Trenning2

1 School of Nursing and Midwifery, Griffith University, Nathan, QLD, p.calleja@griffith.edu.au

2 Retrieval Services Queensland, 125 Kedron Park Road, Kedron, QLD, leeanne.trenning@health.qld.gov.au

 

Background: To identify support needs of emergency clinicians outside of metropolitan areas. In rural and remote areas, healthcare is provided with minimal resources and support, and is complicated by large, isolated geographical areas with a population who have generally poorer health outcomes. Despite this there is a paucity of published research focussing on issues that impact on delivery of rural and remote emergency care. In spite of this, in Queensland, Australia, service models have been developed and implemented to support clinicians based on anecdotal evidence or single case outcomes.

Method: Semi- structured interviews have been chosen because in-depth interviews focus on the experience of the person being interviewed (Liamputtong & Ezzy, 2005), that is, understanding the experience and perception of clinicians in rural and remote regions’ and their support needs. Clinicians in rural and remote areas are also usually poorly resourced, so while focus groups were considered, in most instances would not be possible due to staffing. Interviews will be conducted face to face. Context is likely to have an impact on conducting the interview (e.g. the need for flexibility due to vagaries in telecommunication functioning remote areas, local emergencies and unexpected activity and social norms). People in isolated locations value interaction face to face, this may be due to geographical and social isolation and how often they are forced to interact remotely in order to access services or seek assistance.

Current Progress: Currently recruiting HHS and participants.

Discussion: This research does not appear to have been conducted in Australia or internationally, despite the quite advanced foray into sophisticated service models that provide support for rural and remote clinicians. The issues associated with accessing timely and adequate care have been a recent focus in Government, who have responded with the advent of new support services such as TEMSU and telehealth services in rural and remote areas. Since support needs of clinicians has not been known, service models have been based on anecdotal evidence identified by critical incidents and poor patient outcomes. The purpose of this research is to identify what support nursing and medical clinicians feel is needed and then use this as a basis for evaluating, planning and shaping future and current services supporting rural and remote emergency practitioners in Queensland, and augment other measures of patient safety, care, effectiveness and efficiency. This is significant in underpinning strategies to engage clinicians in the use of telehealth, a factor in the current slower than hoped for uptake of telehealth services in Queensland. There is a potential for impact in a number of areas from this research and may positively impact on:

  • current service provision
  • clinical workforces in rural and remote areas
  • residents of rural and remote areas
  • health-care costs relating to urgent patient retrieval, services/processes required to reduce patient deterioration and staff turnover.
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