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Grampians Health takes a step to improving access to care and in monitoring COVID-19 patients

20 May 2022 

A COVID-19 monitoring system has been rolled out by Grampians Health to manage COVID-19 positive patients at home. 

The Department of Health introduced the Austin Health inspired COVID Monitor system late in 2021 to support health services. It is a web application supporting the coordination, triaging and clinical management of positive patients, to assist Grampians Health manage a high number of COVID-19 patients through its BHS at Home program in Ballarat. 

Patients receive a daily SMS survey to enter their COVID symptoms which can be viewed by clinicians in real time. 

The automated triage process means that significant numbers of patients that report mild symptoms or no symptoms are monitored by SMS messaging and will not require a phone call for an assessment or daily contact from our clinical team. These patients are monitored by SMS for a period of 7 days and then automatically discharged. Patients that are prioritised in the medium to high range are telephoned for an Intake Assessment within 24 hours. 

Chief Operating Officer Community and Aged Care, Craig Wilding, said Grampians Health was pleased to implement this innovative program which had assisted a great majority of COVID-19 positive patients across the Grampians region since it was introduced in February. 

“The COVID Monitoring program also provides the Department of Health with a level of insight into the Grampians Region management of COVID-19, allowing greater support for resourcing, capacity building and standardised care for patients enrolled in the COVID positive pathways,” Mr Wilding said. 

“It has been an important and valuable resource in assisting our BHS at Home program to manage COVID-19 patients and ensuring those in our community who need immediate attention receive appropriate care. 

“COVID Monitor allows care coordination and management between Grampians Health, GPs and other community and healthcare services.” 

There are plans to consider how this successful system could be used post COVID for other programs and services such as chronic disease management.