The Victorian Government has funded a range of telehealth initiatives. These include:
Round two Telehealth Specialist Clinic Initiative Projects - commenced March 2018
Albury Wodonga Health - Increasing access to psychiatry specialist clinics project
Albury Wodonga Health will work in collaboration with partners in Mansfield District Hospital, Upper Murray Community Services, Beechworth Health Service, Alpine Health and Benalla Health to further expand telehealth services, to provide a timely and responsive Mental Health service for patients accessing specialist clinics.
Alfred Health - A place based approach to telehealth in East Gippsland project
Alfred Health will collaborate with the Gippsland Primary Health Network and Bairnsdale Regional Health Service to expand telehealth services delivered to the East Gippsland region and improved access to speciality services.
Alfred Health - Better Access to Geriatrician Care for Frail Older Adults
Alfred Health will improve access to Geriatric Clinic consultations utilising telehealth for patients residing at home and in residential aged care facilities (metropolitan or regional Victoria), who are unable or find it difficult to attend face-to-face Geriatric Clinics due to travelling distance and limited mobility. Alfred Health will also develop a partnership with Bass Coast Health – Wonthaggi Hospital to deliver telehealth Geriatric Clinics to older adults in the Bass Coast area.
Austin Health Telehealth enabled patient transfer diversion project
Austin Health will expand Telehealth enabled access to Austin Health Specialist Clinics with a focus on reducing cost and risks to clients, staff and services associated with patient transfers. Austin Health will work in collaboration with Forensicare to reduce the need to transfer patients from the Thomas Embling Hospital (a high security forensic mental health hospital) for their specialist care. Telehealth will also be enabled across Austin Health campuses, aiming to reduce the need for inter-campus patient transfers. Austin Health will continue to expand the range of specialist clinic units offering enhanced patient and family experience and accessible, safe, quality care via Telehealth.
Ballarat Health Services Telehealth Specialist Clinic Project
Ballarat Health Service will establish a telehealth service to provide timely access to patients in specialist outpatient clinics and reduce the number of patients failing to attend. The target group are patients who require a review appointment only.
Barwon Health - Sustaining and embedding telehealth access to specialist clinics – addressing implementation barriers in the Barwon South West region project
Bendigo Health - Loddon Mallee Tele Fractures Clinic project
Bendigo Health provides the only public health fractures clinic in the Loddon-Mallee region. Bendigo Health will work in collaboration with Swan Hill District Health, Kyabram District Health Service, Echuca Regional Health & Loddon Mallee Rural Health Alliance to establish a tele-fractures clinic to promote access for patients.
Central Gippsland Health Paediatric telehealth - Gippsland Boorai & Youth Health Direct project
Central Gippsland Health will deliver an integrated paediatric telehealth service to provide timely and appropriate care for the paediatric population residing within the Wellington, East Gippsland and South Gippsland regions. This service includes, but is not limited to, outpatients and inpatients in these regions. Benefits of paediatric telehealth service provision include time saving for clinician travel to outreach destinations, so more hours can be dedicated to block telehealth sessions. The direct benefits for patients, families and carers are time and costs savings in terms of travel, time off work and school and disruption to routine.
Latrobe Regional Hospital - Gaining ground in Gippsland: a telehealth model for localised care project
Melbourne Health - The Royal Park Telehealth Implementation Support Team Project
Key benefits will be:
- Improved clinical collaboration across the organisation
- Staff and patient savings in time and travel (between campuses and also post discharge)
- Increased timely access to specialist care services for regional and outer metropolitan patients
Monash Health (MH) Expansion of Telehealth service for Adults projects
Monash Health will partner with Bairnsdale Regional Health, Bass Coast Health, Central Gippsland HS and Latrobe Regional Hospital to upscale the already existing paediatric telehealth platform to establish a similar telehealth program for adults.
Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre - Peter Mac telehealth – Cancer care closer to home project
Through partnership with the Wimmera Southern Mallee Health Alliance, Peter Mac will explore and develop a) modes of delivering education more effectively through a clinician-supported eLearning approach for patients about to commence chemotherapy; b) models for scheduled pre-chemo review appointments by telehealth and c) unplanned consultations by telehealth to quickly address significant treatment side-effects. Consultations may include a specialist oncology nurse in the Wimmera, the patients usual GP or another healthcare professional.
Peter Mac Pre Assessment Clinic (PAC) will develop models of identifying patients suitable for pre-surgical assessment and workup by telehealth with the possibility of also including a clinician-supported eLearning educational component by telehealth.
Peter Mac volunteers will help raise awareness of telehealth with regional patients and help them get set up if needed. A model will be developed to build this in to routine volunteer services. The aim is to be able to scale all initiatives.
Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital - Expanding telehealth to high volume, low complexity clinics in a tertiary specialist hospital project
The purpose of the project is to provide telehealth in high volume, low complexity specialist clinics. This is aimed at the Acute Ophthalmology Service and its phone review, specific components of the Surgical Ophthalmology Service and 3 pre-admission clinics (anaesthetist-led, nurse-led and nurse-led phone appointments).
St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne - St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne Victorian Telehealth Specialist Clinic project
St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne will work in collaboration with partners to leverage established telehealth services to improve access for public patients in outer metropolitan area and regional Victoria. Initially post arthroplasty review, osteoarthritis, cardiology, endocrinology, urology, gastroenterology and pain and disability specialist clinics have been identified as being part of this telehealth pilot project.
Wimmera Health Care Group - Wimmera Rural Cancer Care Tele-Coordination Program Project
Other Telehealth Unit Funded Projects
Telehealth Victoria Community of Practice
The 12 month project will collaborate with DHHS funded projects, the DHHS and members to develop and make available a telehealth resource kit for Victorian Public Health Services. The project will also continue to host the Community of Practice website and forums and provide workshops and webinars.
Ballarat Health Service & Bendigo Health - Out of Hours Telehealth Urgent Care – Emergency Department Grampians and Loddon Mallee Regions Project
Round one Victorian Telehealth Specialist Clinic Initiative Projects
Completed February 2018
Alfred Health - A co-ordinated approach to Telehealth in Alfred Health’s specialist clinics and state-wide services
Alfred Health worked in collaboration with partners at Mildura Base Hospital, Central Gippsland Health Service, Peninsula Health and Warrnambool Base Hospital to introduce Telehealth for patients accessing Burns, Infectious Disease, Lung Transplant, Orthopaedics, Gastroenterology, Dialysis and HIV services.
Austin Health State Wide Services Telehealth Program
Austin Health worked in collaboration with Bendigo Health and the Murray Primary Health Network to upscale Telehealth in two state-wide services, the Victorian Respiratory Support Service and the Victorian Spinal Cord Service.
Ballarat Health Services - The Integration of Telehealth to the Ballarat Health Services Persistent Pain Management Service
Barwon Health - Implementing Telehealth access to Specialist clinics on an organisational and regional scale
Bendigo Health - Establishment of a Bendigo Health Telehealth Outpatients Service
Eastern Health - Telemedicine @ Eastern: Specialist Clinics
Melbourne Health Telehealth divisional implementation strategy
Monash Health Telehealth in Children's Program
Northeast Health Wangaratta
Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre - Establishment of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre (VCCC) Telehealth Network
Portland District Health - An integrated approach to Chronic Pain Management in the Rural Community of Portland and District
The Royal Children’s Hospital - State-wide access to RCH paediatric sub-speciality services
This project encompassed a range of speciality specific sub-projects under the umbrella of an organisational wide approach to telehealth.
The Royal Women’s Hospital – Menopause after cancer service
Rural Northwest Health - Flying Doctor Telehealth Specialist Service
Royal Victorian Eye & Ear Hospital - Telehealth improving the patient experience in a tertiary speciality hospital
Victorian Telehealth Community of Practice - Developing a Victorian Telehealth Community of Practice
2016 Better Care Victoria Projects
(More information about these projects can be found at innovation projects.)
Gippsland Southern Health Service - Implementing telehealth for urgent care medical consultations
An after-hours telehealth service within a regional emergency department was established. The service provides 24 hour access to service Urgent Care Centres located in South Gippsland.
Latrobe Regional Hospital - Expansion of a telemedicine model to the patient's home
An outpatient paediatric, diabetes and heart failure consultant service via telehealth was established for patients residing at home or at a GP clinic located greater than 15kms from the Latrobe Regional Hospital site.
Loddon Mallee Rural Health Alliance - Geri Connect
The Loddon Mallee region has access to telehealth consultation technology to support the provision of geriatric medicine across inpatient and residential aged care settings.
Mildura Base Hospital - Better care for rural patients in Intensive Care Units with chronic complex care needs through telemedicine
The project involved the use of telehealth to improve access to intensivists in tertiary and level 2 Intensive Care Units, to increase the capability of rural clinicians to care for patients with chronic complex conditions requiring critical care in Mildura and the surrounding regions. Telehealth will ensure patients with chronic complex conditions can stay close to their families and support networks, while receiving their care
Otway Health & Lorne Community Health - Remote Drug and Alcohol Recovery for the Southern Otways Region
Specialist alcohol and other drug support services in a rural community can be utilised via telehealth. The project focused on building regional capacity through education and formalised pathways of care.
Other Completed Projects 2013-2015
Dental Health Services Victoria - Tele-dentistry in rural and remote areas
The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital - Ophthalmic Outreach Telehealth Program
Hume After-Hours Urgent Care
The Hume After-Hours Urgent Care telehealth project links urgent care centres (UCC) across the Hume Region with the emergency department at Northeast Health Wangaratta via videoconferencing. Medical and nursing staff in smaller rural services are supported in assessing and delivering care to patients that present after hours. Staff training and clinical governance protocols have been a key part in rolling out this initiative. In 2014 Northeast Health received additional funding to extend the model to additional sites across the region.
Advanced musculoskeletal physiotherapy review
The Expanding Paediatric telehealth project improved access to subspecialist paediatric services for young people across Victoria by enabling regional paediatricians to conduct medical consultations with specialists at the Royal Children’s Hospital and the Monash Children’s. Key successes of the project were that patients no longer have to travel for services and the capacity of clinicians in regional services is expanding. Five regional health services participated in the project and more than 250 consultations were booked. A suite of resources were developed as part of this project:
Telehealth Video Solution Investment Decision Support Tool
The State wide Expanding Paediatric Telehealth Project commissioned the Australian Centre for Health Innovation to develop a video solution evaluation tool which could be used by health services to aid video solution investment decisions in light of video technology developments.
The evaluation tool uses a proven weighted score software assessment methodology to allow for the objective evaluation of the available options. The evaluation identifies the key requirements for sustainability and affordability and generates a report which can be used to support a business case for investment. Ultimately, the tool guides health services (of varying sizes) in the selection of cloud based video solutions that are interoperable (i.e. capable of working across or between different solutions that might be in use).
The telehealth video solution investment decision support tool guides health services in the selection of video solutions that will best meet their needs.
Telehealth learning module
Getting ready for telehealth
The Expanding Paediatric Telehealth Project produced a short video to introduce the practical aspects of setting up and holding a telehealth consultation. This was developed for staff at the Royal Children’s Hospital but will be useful to all those involved in setting up telehealth services.
See Getting Ready for Telehealth.
The Aboriginal Telehealth project was rolled out by the Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO) to telehealth-enable its members (the ACCHOs) to offer patients access to specialists via videoconferencing. The project was initially piloted in Gippsland, with other regions to follow. A needs analysis is identifying the specific services that will be the focus for each region. It is anticipated that the initiative will improve access to specialist services for the Aboriginal community, which often experiences lack of transport options and poorer health outcomes.
Mental Health Review Tribunal videoconferencing solution
Stroke tele-rehabilitation subacute telehealth projects
University Hospital Geelong Intensive Care Telehealth Project
The University Hospital Geelong Intensive Care Telehealth project trialled the provision of specialist care for critically ill patients in intensive care units (ICU) and urgent care centres across the Barwon-South Western region through telehealth/videoconferencing facilities. The initiative enabled the University Hospital Geelong ICU to receive clinical advice from the specialist ICUs at the Alfred Hospital and the Royal Children’s Hospital in treating patients, and provide advice downstream to other ICUs in Warrnambool and Hamilton. The project improved care for critically ill patients, improved the patient experience, and supported clinicians working remotely. The project won the Secretary’s Award for improving patient outcomes and patient experience at the 2014 Victorian Public Healthcare Awards.
Refugee Health Clinical Hub Enhancement
Health Independence Program Residential Inreach telehealth initiative
Barwon Health Personal Health Care
Victorian Stroke Telemedicine program
Reviewed 24 October 2021