Northern Territory HealthPathways

Northern Territory HealthPathways is a locally developed clinical pathway website that aids the clinical team, particularly general practitioners (GPs), to help patients navigate complex local variation in referral pathways and management of conditions. Developed by local GPs and health services in collaboration with hospital specialists, the pathways walk a GP through clinical patient management with a reminder of the locally agreed best practice diagnosis and management skills for a condition, aligning and linking to Remote Primary Health Care Manuals where these exist.

HealthPathways is designed and written to use during a consultation. Each pathway provides clear and concise guidance for assessing and managing a patient with a particular symptom or condition. Pathways also include information about making requests to services in the local health system.

HealthPathways was originally developed in Canterbury, New Zealand, to support a whole-of-system approach to patient-centred care, and has since been adopted and adapted by other health systems around the world.

Northern Territory PHN (NT PHN) has committed to working with our stakeholders to deliver this program in the Northern Territory (NT).

NT HealthPathways

NT HealthPathways content is developed collaboratively by GPs, hospital clinicians, and a wide range of other health professionals. Each pathway is evidence-informed, but also reflects local reality, and aims to preserve clinical autonomy and patient choice. HealthPathways serves to reduce unwarranted variation and accelerate evidence into practice.

NT HealthPathways is aimed at GPs, but it can also be used by hospital specialists practice nurses, practice managers, and allied health providers.

NT HealthPathways will be dynamic with new pathways constantly under development and existing pathways regularly reviewed in light of changing evidence, technology and local circumstances. Feedback from those using the pathways is particularly valuable in ensuring the latest information is captured.

NT HealthPathways will be localised to specific regions in the Northern Territory.

  • Darwin
  • Darwin Remote
  • East Arnhem
  • Katherine and Katherine Region
  • Alice Springs
  • Remote Central Australia

Who is creating NT HealthPathways?

Northern Territory HealthPathways is a collaborative project between NT PHN, Top End Health Service, Central Australia Health Service, Darwin Private Hospital, Health Providers Alliance Northern Territory and Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory.

How will NT HealthPathways benefit GPs?

Using NT HealthPathways will be quick and easy. It will help GPs and primary care providers manage a condition or accurately refer a patient to local specialists and services in as little as a few seconds.

NT HealthPathways will:

  • support decision making for assessment, management and appropriate referral.
  • provide clear localised referral information leading to better quality referrals, decreased return referrals, timely specialist access.
  • improve relationships between service providers due to locally agreed referral pathway.

How will NT HealthPathways benefit patients?

NT HealthPathways is designed to make a real difference to patients. The aim is to help patients get the right care, at the right time and in the right place.

NT HealthPathways will enable GPs to better help patients by outlining:

  • the best management and treatment options and appropriate care in the primary health setting
  • timely access to specialist and allied health
  • educational resources and information for patients

What’s included in HealthPathways?

  • Generic HealthPathways with best practice assesment and treatment which does not yet have the local NT information
  • Localised HealthPathways and localised NT referral pathways (request pages) RPHCM manual access
  • Electronic Theraputic Guidelines (eTG) access with authenticated URL for GPs only
  • Health Alerts
  • Access to NT PHN calendar of events

Who can, and should, use the HealthPathways portal?

All NT GP’s will have access to NT HealthPathways and should use the localised pathways as guidance for the agreed treatment pathways and referral requirements in the NT.

Other health practitioners are encouraged to use the NT HealthPathways portal as a source of information but are not authorised to use it as a clinical guideline or to guide their practice outside their agreed scope. Remote area health staff should continue to use RPHCM as their agreed clinical manual.

The portal is not designed to be used by patients or general community members.

GPs and health practitioners can only use the online portal by using a secure login and password.

Can health practitioners suggest improvements to HealthPathways?

Yes. HealthPathways will continue to develop and improve.

Every page in HealthPathways has a feedback submission button in the top right hand corner. Use this to contact your local HealthPathways team with questions, or suggestions for improvement. We welcome and need this level of ongoing feedback to ensure the accuracy of the site.

Continual Quality Improvement- We Need Information From You

To assist us to build this ‘one stop shop’ – we need information from service providers across the Territory.

Do you deliver a service for patients?

Any services that a GP could benefit from knowing about?

We want to hear from you.

If you do have a service, complete our survey.  It is designed for all clinicians, so answer the fields that are relevant for you.

Useful links

HealthPathways Information Sheet

Northern Territory HealthPathways site

Contact

Contact healthpathways@ntphn.org.au to request access to NT HealthPathways in your region.