Software Used for Referrals to Clinics in San Diego
UC-San Diego Medical Center and three clinics this month have begun using a new computer program aimed at helping emergency department patients without primary care providers seek follow-up care at a clinic, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.
The program, called Impact ED, allows ED staff at UCSD Medical Center to directly schedule appointments for patients at:
- Linda Vista Health Care Center;
- Mid-City Community Clinic; and
- Mid-City Community Clinic-Pediatrics.
All three clinics are operated by the not-for-profit San Diego Family Care. The program was funded with a $25,000 donation from Alliance Healthcare Foundation.
The software for Impact ED is based on UCSD's electronic health records system. The system alerts hospital staff when a patient does not have a primary care provider and lives in one of nine ZIP codes near the participating clinics.
About 30% of the 8,000 to 10,000 annual ED visits to UCSD involve patients who do not have a primary care provider and use the hospital for routine medical care.
Hospital staff can schedule follow-up appointments at clinics before patients leave the hospital. Patients are reminded by telephone about the appointment by clinic staffers.
Ted Chan, medical director of the hospital's ED, said that based on a few weeks of data, about 40% of participants in the program have shown up for their clinic appointment. Chan said he is aiming for 50% (Darcé, San Diego Union-Tribune, 4/25). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.