A recent patient survey into the use of the Emergency Telehealth Service has generated outstanding feedback in support of the high-tech videoconferencing health service.
Member for Central Wheatbelt Mia Davies MLA said Telehealth was used to link people in rural and remote areas to a range of clinicians in the State’s major hospitals and health services.
“More than 15,000 country patients have used the Telehealth service for outpatient appointments in the past year and the service is continuing to grow as people hear how convenient it is,” Ms Davies said.
“It makes a big difference when regional and remote patients are able to see their specialist via videoconference from their local hospital, and not have to make arrangements to leave family and work, travel for hours, and find accommodation.”
“The overwhelming feedback was that patients who attended an appointment via Telehealth were very happy with the ease and quality of the service.
“It is clear that Telehealth staff at the regional health services are seen by regional patients as professional and supportive, and that using the Telehealth Service is far better than having to travel to the city or a regional centre.”
Almost all patients said the service was as effective as a face-to-face appointment and saved them time and money.
Northam resident Bryan Harper has had two rounds of surgery on his hand and has to attend follow-up appointments with Royal Perth Hospital specialists every fortnight.
Thanks to the Telehealth service he is able to drive two streets from his home to the Northam Health Service to attend the outpatient appointments using Telehealth videoconferencing.
“The Northam staff ring you the day before to make sure you haven’t forgotten the appointment. So it is as good as going into Royal Perth – but without all the mucking around to get into Perth,” Mr Harper said.
Member for the Agricultural Region Hon Martin Aldridge MLC said the expansion of Telehealth was just one example of the State Government’s significant investment in regional health care through Royalties for Regions.
“Royalties for Regions has invested $31 million into Telehealth and 99 per cent of those surveyed would recommend the Telehealth service, which is a pretty clear indication of the success of this investment,” Mr Aldridge said.
or more information, please visit wacountry.health.wa.gov.au/southerninland.
For media enquiries please contact Mia Davies on 08 9041 1702 (Merredin office), 08 9622 2871 (Northam office) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.