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Nurse-led telephone triage in an Australian rural mental health service


Barnett, AP and Henderson, S and Henry, D and Gumpold, A and Foote, P and Gallop, S, Nurse-led telephone triage in an Australian rural mental health service, International Journal of Nursing Practice, 15, (5) pp. 389-393. ISSN 1322-7114 (2009) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1440-172X.2009.01788.x


This paper reports on changes in referral patterns of a rural mental health telephone triage service based in Gippsland, Victoria, Australia. A retrospective audit of service data over the period 19992005 was undertaken as part of a quality improvement exercise. Data collected included service utilization statistics and critical reflection on the role of the mental health triage clinician within the service. There was an average of 2771 referrals each year and a trend for increased use by general practitioners and hospital emergency departments. Triage nurses reported concerns about: professional isolation, lack of formal education, difficulties in making decisions based on limited data as well as poor understanding of the role by users (patients and referrers). Further research is needed to evaluate the impact of this form of patient assessment on psychiatric nursing practice and clinical outcomes

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:mental health, nurse, rural, telephone, triage
Research Division:Indigenous Studies
Research Group:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and wellbeing
Research Field:Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander public health and wellbeing
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Behaviour and health
UTAS Author:Barnett, AP (Associate Professor Tony Barnett)
ID Code:72775
Year Published:2009
Web of Science® Times Cited:5
Deposited By:UTAS Centre for Rural Health
Deposited On:2011-08-31
Last Modified:2011-11-01

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