Making a Difference
We are committed to ensuring that all people living in our region, especially marginalised or vulnerable groups, have access to responsive, integrated and high quality primary health services.
This series of videos aims to showcase some of the ways that the Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN is making a real and meaningful difference within our region.
Darling Downs HealthPathways
Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN in collaboration with Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service are making a difference by supporting GPs and clinicians with vital patient referral information through the Darling Downs HealthPathways Program.
The Darling Downs HealthPathways Program is a new web portal that details local health care providers.
The portal is accessible to public and private health clinicians looking to refer patients in their care to more specialised treatment.
Darling Downs HealthPathways has been specifically developed by health clinicians in the Darling Downs region for health clincians in the Darling Downs region to ensure that patients receive the right care, at the right time, and in the right place.
Goolburri Care Coordinator
Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN in partnership with Goolburri are making a difference by helping address the health needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families in the region.
The Goolburri Aboriginal Health Advancement Company (Goolburri) has been funded by Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN to employ a Care Coordinator to assist young mums with much needed access to midwifery services and other vital medical and social support services for their children.
Working closely with Carbal’s New Directions Hub and Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service Family and Child Service including Boomagam, the Goolburri Care Coordinator service has been designed to improve health outcomes by:
- Increasing the number and timeliness of ante-natal visits
- Decreasing smoking during pregnancy
- Increasing child immunisation rates
- Increasing the early identification and treatment of early child hood health care issues.
The Care Coordinator maximises existing midwifery services provided by Carbal and Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service and encourages young mothers and families to engage and actively participate more freely as they will feel safe and respected.
Developing a trusting relationship with staff to seek the right information and education, provides the support they require to become the best parents and families in meeting the health and wellbeing needs of their children.
Diabetes Model of Care
Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN in partnership with Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service are making a difference by creating better pathways for diabetes patients in our community to access specialist care.
Queensland Health has established an Integrated Care Innovation Fund (ICIF) with a primary aim to invest in initiatives that generate new ideas for better integration of care, address fragmentation in services and achieve greater efficiency and value from health delivery systems. This innovation is based on a stepped-up approach for diabetes care. There are two main aims:
- Reduce the demand on specialist and emergency services by up-skilling primary health care to manage their patients within the community.
- Improve patient health literacy and self-management to "close the gap" and improve health outcomes.
The primary program outcomes are to:
- Reduce ED presentations by 25%;
- Reduce the number of diabetic “frequent flyers” to ED;
- Reduce hospital admissions for diabetes related complications;
- Empower patients to self-care leading to improved medication compliance/titration and diabetic control
- Improve health outcomes for indigenous people ("Closing the Gap" in health status and a reduction in the number of people discharged against medical advice); and
- Reduce chronic potentially preventable hospitalisations (PPH).
This innovation is based on a stepped-up approach providing innovative care solutions for low through to high need diabetics. The project has four key components:
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) Care Coordination Virtual Team
- GP-Led Diabetes Care
- QAS Referral Pathway
- Home Monitoring
Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN is working with the regions Hospital and Health Services to support the GP-Led Diabetes Care component of this project.
Funding on-the-street services for young people
Through Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN funding, METRO Care Street Crews program provides a support network for young people requiring assistance and helps to address the negative effects of alcohol and drugs during late night trading hours in the Toowoomba CBD.
Endorsed by Red Frogs Australia and the local Safe Night Precinct Committee, METRO Care Street Crews are working to reduce the frequency and impact of major harm along with drug and alcohol fuelled incidents – mainly on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.
The program reaches out to youth – meeting them where they hang out. METRO Care Street Crews provide ‘just in time’ support when they are in trouble, including support to find a safe space, and referrals for further healthcare if necessary.
Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN is making a difference through funding to establish and operate a rural aged care training facility focused on innovative methods and techniques for staff and carers working with residents needing dementia and memory support care. The project incorporated:
- 59 Education sessions based around the Montessori Philosophy.
- Installation of visual prompts for residents, enabling residents to independently participate in activities. Between 1 October 2016 and 30 May 2017, general reductions were seen in wandering behaviours, refusals of care, and physically threatening harm to others or objects.
- Personalised playlists created to relax and calm residents, improve sleep patterns and reduce Parkinson shakes.
- A 7 Day a Week Comfort Care program delivered to the most vulnerable residents resulting in a 73% decrease in skin tears from the previous 6 month period; 90% decrease in UTI; decreased agitation and repetitive speech.
Assisting people with dementia through the Montessori Methods
Mary has advanced dementia. When she arrived at Beauaraba Living, Mary could walk and feed herself with prompts and staff assistance. However, as her Dementia progressed she became reliant on staff for all aspects of care.
After learning the ‘Montessori Methods’ the staff felt they would be able to help Mary to relearn how to assist herself in some minor but significant ways. As time progressed, staff encouraged Mary to move items around on the table in front of her, which progressed to picking up items and putting them in baskets or boxes, and then to holding onto cutlery and matching it with pictures of the cutlery.
One day a phone call came from a very excited staff member to say, “Mary is feeding herself”. Staff had done a great job with encouraging and rehabilitating Mary do this activity and Mary herself seemed proud of herself. She has maintained weight, and to this day is still able to feed herself after being set up by staff.
Darling Downs and West Morton PHN is making a difference by supporting Sunrise Way to help people affected by addiction rebuild their lives.
Sunrise Way received funding to assist with reducing waitlists for residential alcohol and drug rehabilitation services, with a particular focus on methamphetamines. The funding delivered increased beds to the existing service through the employment of additional qualified and experienced staff. A new, culturally safe, residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation program specifically for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people was also funded.
Throughout 2016/17 the Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN facilitated Sunrise Way to access additional funding through Queensland Health to further expand service delivery.
Gundy Medical Muster
Working in partnership with stakeholders, Darling Downs and West Moreton PHN is committed to providing targeted education for health professionals within our region.
The Gundy Medical Muster is being held the weekend of the 7th - 9th September 2018. This biennial event is located in Goondiwindi and is providing an opportunity for rural and regional health professionals to come together for a weekend of education and networking.
This year, the event will explore the ideas surrounding the theme of "Extremes of Life - Health Care in the Beginning and the End". This year's Muster will include education sessions discussing antenatal, paediatric and geriatric care from a multitude of health perspectives.