After Hours Support Funding
TMML has continued wide-spread consultation across the region to discuss after hours services and funding with all stakeholders.
From 1 July 2013, funding previously distributed via the Practice Incentive Program (PIP) has been redirected to Medicare Locals to administrate and ensure after hours services continue to be funded for the provision of services between 6pm-8am daily.
Information evenings were held in Townsville (19 November 2012) and Mackay (26 November 2012) facilitated by Dr Lisa Crossland (University of Qld) with TMML Chair Dr Kevin Arlett and CEO Ms Julie Scheuber present to discuss the funding and contractual requirements of Medicare Locals.
For recommendations from the information meetings click here
1800 National gp
TMML are continuing to work with both 13Health and the 1800 national gp helpline (Healthdirect) to ensure consumers contacting the help line and requiring face to face care in the after hours period are assisted locally. In June 2012, TMML in partnership with the QAS co-funded an Emergency Medical Dispatch Officer position to be available between the hours of 10pm and 8am to assist callers access care locally when needed. This position has been extended to also be available for consumers from 6pm. Agreements are in place with both 13Health and the 1800 national gp helpline to warm transfer callers to the EDMO for handover and connection to local after hours service providers. The ability to provide electronic health summaries to the EDMO is currently being finalised between Healthdirect and the QAS.
Further details are available regarding continuity of care, safety and risk management systems and access to interpreter services via:
Further discussions are planned to address issues with warm transfer and continuity of care issues with 13Health. Further details to follow.
All general practices and hospitals have been visited by TMML staff to discuss after hours care and the funding of rural general practices from 1 July 2013 through TMML. Further consultation will occur throughout February and March 2013 with pharmacies, Residential Aged Care Facility’s, non-government organisations.
Consultation both via face to face meetings and telephone have commenced with agencies in Townsville and Mackay to inform TMML of programs currently offered across the region. Opportunities for integration and enhancement of services is being considered for the after hours period where a gap is being identified. Further work in this area is to continue throughout February and March 2013.
After Hours Program Advisory
TMML have convened an After Hours Program Advisory Committee with representatives from rural and urban general practice, Qld Health, QAS, Community and consumer representatives. The committee will meet quarterly throughout 2013 to provide advice and input on the program and to ensure TMML maintain the objectives of the After Hours Program.
Where to from here?
TMML are required to submit a proposed plan for the program to the Department of Health & Ageing on 28 February 2013. Once approved, TMML will be in contact with all practices to advise the outcome and commence funding agreement negotiations.
Please contact Alison Berigan on 4421 7762 or email@example.com