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Residential Aged Care Facilities Virtual Care Service improves the health of residents

2 min read
Virtual Care Service

The new Residential Aged Care Facility (RACF) Virtual Care Service, funded by Sydney North Health Network, will help those residing in RACFs to easily access Primary Health Care through virtual technology. 

 A $1.1 million funding package provided by Sydney North Health Network (SNHN) will enable local RACFs to implement secure video healthcare consultations and remote vital signs monitoring. Out of 103 RACFs in the region, 60 have already signed up for the service.  

Health Teams Pty Ltd will ensure the fruition of the RACF Virtual Care Service through the implementation of their Health Teams platform. 

The RACF Virtual Care Service is intended to support non-urgent, routine and scheduled care for RACF residents with their healthcare providers.  

Supplementing face-to-face visits by healthcare providers, and secure video consultations will enable RACF residents to access primary care providers and clinicians in optimal time. Boosting care coordination between RACFs, primary care and other clinicians as well as increased use of the My Health Record system will allow more effective care for residents reflecting a whole person’s health needs.  

“The Australian Government’s funding of this technology through SNHN will allow RACF residents to obtain improved access to primary healthcare, and help family members to experience a greater level of inclusion in their loved one’s health and wellbeing. We hope this service will transform residents’ experience of the primary health system,” said Lynelle Hales, Sydney North Health Network CEO 

Healthcare professionals delivering this new service will benefit from reduced travel time as appointments are conducted virtually.  

The implementation of remote vital signs monitoring will help healthcare providers to improve the management of residents’ chronic conditions, increase the capability for early intervention, and help reduce hospital admissions. 

The families of loved ones living in RACFs will also gain greater opportunities to engage with their loved ones, carers, and healthcare professionals through the Health Teams platform. 

Funding will also assist in educating RACF staff and healthcare providers, such as General Practitioners, on how to implement and deliver virtual care. SNHN staff will also be trained to provide educational support to RACFs when needed. 

SNHN has commissioned the RACF Virtual Care Service as a unique ‘single solution’ approach to streamline its rollout to all participating RACFs in the Northern Sydney region, improve continuity of service, have a unified approach in providing education and reduce healthcare provider learning burden for multiple systems. 

The RACF Virtual Care Service is part of the Australian Government’s response to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety and was co-designed with a diverse group of virtual care stakeholders, government and non-government agencies, healthcare providers and people with residential aged care lived experience. 

Related: Catholic health provider expands QLD’s residential aged care portfolio

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Menchie Khairuddin is a writer Deputy Content Manager at Akolade and content producer for Third Sector News. She is passionate about social affairs specifically in mixed, multicultural heritage and not-for-profit organisations.


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