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Capital & Coast and DHB to roll out Health Care Homes

Capital & Coast and DHB to roll out Health Care Homes

Improved access and a greater focus on managing patients with long-term conditions in the community, is all part of a pilot programme being launched Capital & Coast District Health Board, says Board Chair Dr Virginia Hope.

The Health Care Homes pilot will be rolled out to around 185,000 patients enrolled with GPs across Wellington, Porirua and Kapiti over the next three years and will cost around $8 million, said Dr Hope.

“The pilot programme is about finding innovative ways for our communities to engage with health services in the community. It will also better support patients by having, GPs, specialists and community nursing teams’ work together to deliver health care in the community.

“The aim of the Health Care Homes is to improve access and care for patients, support them to have more control over their own care, target services to those who need them the most, wrap the appropriate health and social support services around the patient and their family, and reduce the burden on hospital services.

“Health Care Homes will also make it easier to get same day GP appointments, and will provide extended hours, and allow patients to have virtual consultations with GPs by phone, or email. Patients will also have access to their clinical information over the internet via patient portals,” she said.

“Everyone on the Board was enthusiastic about the potential to make it easier for people needing urgent care to see a GP faster, but to also improve the care available to people with long term and complex health conditions.

“The Health Care Homes model will be better for patients, GPs, primary healthcare nurses and our community as a whole.”

General Practice New Zealand, Chair Shelley Frost said her organisation fully supports the principles of the Health Care Homes concept of a fully integrated, multi-disciplinary team of providers with general practice at the core.

“We see the Health Care Homes as a key component of an integrated health and care system, accountable for the health and wellbeing of its enrolled population and as the hub of coordination and delivery of high quality health and social care services.

“This pilot is a great example of DHBs and primary care networks working in partnership to achieve the best outcomes for the people and communities they serve and the health system as a whole,” Mrs Frost said.

Dr Hope said the DHB would invest $6 million into the pilot over the next three years, and a further $2 million will be invested by Primary Health Organisations. “The DHB and Primary Health Organisations will be working in partnership to make sure this is successful.”

The DHB will begin calling for expressions of interest from GP practices, who want to sign up to be part of the pilot in October and rollout is expected to begin in April. The pilot programme will run until 2017/2018 when it will be reviewed to determine whether it should be rolled out more widely.

ENDS

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