New service helps patients avoid unnecessary hospital visits

General practitioners and community care providers located in Central Adelaide’s catchment area are now able to refer suitable patients to a new service focused on helping patients to avoid unnecessary hospital visits.

Established by Central Adelaide and its SA Medical Imaging service in partnership with the South Australian Ambulance Service (SAAS), this new model of care offers patients with complex needs as an alternative to hospital emergency departments.

Known as the CALHN Hospital Avoidance and Supported Discharge Service (HASDS), this service provides a level of care that is outside the clinical capacity of general practice and/or priority care centres, as an alternative to presenting to a CALHN emergency department.

Delivered by an interdisciplinary medical, nursing and allied health team, the services aims to resolve identified gaps in existing service models to promote hospital avoidance by offering:

  • access to multidisciplinary assessment during presentations
  • onsite access to ultrasound and plain x-ray (including chest, upper and lower limbs)
  • input from CALHN specialists with direct admission pathways
  • rapid access to pathology including point of care testing
  • facilities and equipment to support patients with poor mobility and/or bariatric patients
  • follow up home visits after presentation and/or referral to relevant community services eg. Hospital in the Home, Multidisciplinary Community Geriatrics Service, government and non-government community services.

Eligibility for the service

Eligible patients include those who are assessed by service providers as needing health care that cannot be met by another community and/or primary health service (inc. Priority Care Centres) and would otherwise present to an emergency department including but not limited to:

  • people from all housing types including private, disability housing, supported living
  • Residential aged care and
  • people experiencing homelessness.

Referrals are accepted from GPs, PCCs, community services and SAAS Extended Care Paramedics and can be made by phoning 0475 813 345.