LOGIC March 2018 Vol 17 Vol 1 - Page 17

HOW: I use sophisticated telephony systems and internationally used triage software applications which means I am on a phone and a computer simultaneously. Consent is obtained from the patient to assess their situation and we have emergency procedures to follow as indicated. Telephone triage provides helpful solutions for people who might otherwise have needed to travel for assessment or wait until their general practice clinic opens. An interpreter service is also available to triage nurses 24 hours a day which is useful as non-English speaking tourists visiting New Zealand often ring for advice or assistance in locating healthcare facilities. At the beginning of an encounter, I can usually develop a rapport with my caller within a few words by utilizing communication skills, engagement techniques and adapting my approach to their individual needs. My clinical judgement and decision making as well as the triage software enables me to inform the caller what level of care the patient requires based on the information obtained during the assessment. I can conference through to ambulance, on call doctors, March 2018 L.O.G.I.C prime nurses, midwives, mental health services, Plunket, poisons services or others as required. CALL CENTRE: The telehealth service office provides great collegial support for general and mental health nurses and affiliated health workers such as counsellors. After years of wearing uniforms in nursing I love to dress up now! nursing isn't for everyone and nurses require a variety of prior clinical experiences as they rely on accomplished listening and probing assessment skills. However, in this role, I feel I am a valuable resource and support to patients and my hospital and primary care colleagues. WORK FROM HOME: Working from a home-based office is a convenient option for telehealth nursing. There are no travel or transport issues and colleagues tell me they can work more easily around their lives and pick up extra shifts if required or wanted. HomeCare Medical works hard to ensure staff working from home feel connected to their teams and other staff on their shifts. Telephony group conferences or chat rooms can help with this and are a good means of virtual communication. A shift leader Senior Nurse or Team Manager is available 24 hours a day to support staff whether they are working from home or in the call center office. In summary, telehealth triage 15