Patients to get speedy consult

TREATMENT for patients assessed as non-urgent will be sped up at Emerald Hospital. From September 12, Category 4 and 5 patients will be treated at a new Acute Primary Care Clinic.

All patients who attend the emergency department will be triaged by an experienced nurse, who will categorise their condition according to their clinical need, from the most serious, life-threatening cases at Category 1 to the less-urgent presentations such as coughs and colds at Category 5.

The model to be introduced in Emerald has been successfully implemented in other hospitals.

Emerald staff have visited Proserpine Hospital to review its Acute Primary Care Clinic and to check out how it works.

Emerald Hospital’s acting director of Medical Services Dr James Torrance said about 81% of all presentations to the Emerald Hospital Emergency Department last year were Category 4 and 5 cases.

“This new clinic arrangement will ensure those patients who choose to wait to be seen at hospital are treated as quickly as possible,” Dr Torrance said.

Health care professionals and stakeholders will meet this weekend to discuss the model for the GP Super Clinic in Emerald.

The Federal Government pledged $5m for the facility in the last budget.


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