Development of an occupational therapy-led paediatric burn telehealth review clinic

Phillips, Debra, Matheson, Lauren, Pain, Tilley, and Kingston, Gail A. (2021) Development of an occupational therapy-led paediatric burn telehealth review clinic. Rural and Remote Health, 21 (3). 6223.

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Context: Burns are a common injury in children. Rural and remote children with burn injuries are disadvantaged if their burns require hospitalisation and specialist rehabilitation. Most specialist burn rehabilitation is provided in regional or metropolitan cities by a multidisciplinary team. Therefore, rural and remote burn patients are required to travel to access these services. This project aimed to develop an Occupational Therapy (OT)-Led Paediatric Burn Telehealth Review Clinic (OTPB Clinic) at Townsville University Hospital (TUH) to provide ongoing rehabilitation to rural and remote children after burn injury closer to home.

Issues: Local audits identified inequitable service delivery to children from rural and remote areas after burn injury. A project officer was appointed to develop the OTPB Clinic, including comprehensive guidelines to support sustainability. An expanded scope role was undertaken by the treating OT, and allied health assistants were engaged to promote efficient service delivery.

Lessons learned: The OTPB Clinic commenced in 2017 and was evaluated using patient satisfaction surveys and number of clinical encounters pre- and post-implementation. During the implementation period, 28 rural or remote paediatric burn patients were reviewed. Review frequency increased from 20-week to 8-week intervals. Travel time was reduced by approximately 12 hours per appointment. Families identified numerous benefits of the clinic including continuity of care and reduced time away from work. Less than 4% of patients required re-engagement with paediatric surgeons for surgical intervention. The model has the potential to be transferred to other tertiary referral burns services.

Item ID: 70615
Item Type: Article (Short Note)
ISSN: 1445-6354
Keywords: allied health, Australia, burns, paediatrics, scope of practice, telerehabilitation
Copyright Information: James Cook University administers the journal Rural and Remote Health. It is a condition of publication of an article in Rural and Remote Health that the authors of the article consent to the application of a Creative Commons CC-BY to the published article. Since April 2018, all articles published by Rural and Remote Health are open access, meaning that all content is freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution. This allows readers to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of its articles and to use them for any other lawful purpose without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author (in accordance with the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI) definition of open access).
Date Deposited: 26 May 2022 01:17
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4203 Health services and systems > 420302 Digital health @ 100%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2003 Provision of health and support services > 200301 Allied health therapies (excl. mental health services) @ 100%
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