LIFE-saving medical technology that originated in Orange is helping improve patient treatment at hospitals across western NSW.
The Western NSW Local Health District Critical Care Advisory Service (CCAS) featured on ABC television’s Country Town Rescue recently, which highlighted the service’s flexibility in treating patients in remote hospitals.
The system is the brainchild of Orange hospital intensive care director Dr John Lambert.
During the television show, nurses at Trundle Health Service were able to communicate with intensive care specialists in Orange via video link, phone, fax and email to determine a patient’s treatment plan.
“The phone conference allows people to talk together ... it’s support for a bedside clinician,” Dr Lambert said.
He said about two patients a day were treated via the CCAS across the health district’s 39 smaller hospitals.
As some smaller hospitals are only serviced by nurses, Dr Lambert said CCAS was vital in providing contact with health specialists, not only in Orange but across the state.
Clinicians can be guided through procedures to help treat and stabilise a patient before they are transferred to larger hospitals for specialised treatment.
“It’s based on a network of data communication ... it pulls together data from a whole lot of places,” Dr Lambert said.
“The patients are coming in better, we can do more for them before they arrive here.”
The ability to support clinicians across the health district is vital in helping to retain existing staff and recruit new ones, according to Dr Lambert.
“They’re more likely to go and stay there if they know they will be supported,” he said.