HealthPathways is your COVID-19 patient management resource

This summary has been provided by our clinical advisor Dr Michael Crampton MBBS (UNSW), DRANZCOG, FRACGP, Grad Dip Health Informatics (MonashUni).

HealthPathways is your source for the latest information regarding case management tools for COVID-19 positive patients. Given the recent changes to how COVID-19 positive cases in the community should be managed by GPs, this resource list has been developed as a point-in-time source of information for both patient and practice management. 

The ongoing COVID-19 outbreak requires managment at both a practice and patient level.

At a practice level GPs should be:

1. Operating as a team (within the practice and within the local health care community)

HealthPathways has a section on planning your emergency response under the COVID-19 Self-care Patient Triage and Support Pathway. This pathway outlines how to establish a cohesive practice reponse with clear escalation pathways as well as practice management resources. GPs should also be aware of self-isolation and testing resources that patients may have received from NSW health, which can be found on their website

2. Maintaining staff and patient safety

The COVID-19 PPE, Infection Control, and Exposure Response Pathway has the current Health Care Worker COVID-19 Exposure Risk Assessment Matrix as well as information on staff PPE and protection protocols, staff exposure information, and advice for maintaining staff safety whilst seeing patients face-to-face.

3. Maintaining business continuity

The COVID-19 PPE, Infection Control, and Exposure Response Pathway also has COVID-19 positive case management protocol for staff and inadvertent COVID-19 positive patient exposure protocol. The COVID-19 Active Case Management Pathway outlines the telephone assessment protocol for COVID-19 positive patients contacting practices, this is under COVID-19 care > Initial and ongoing telehealth monitoring during illness.

At a patient level GPs should be:

1. Focusing on sharing prevention strategies

A key prevention strategy for serious illness associated with a COVID-19 infection is vaccination. The COVID-19 Vaccination Pathway outlines scheduling and recording information, as well as resources pertaining to eligible age groups. GPs can also refer patients to resources regarding masks, social distancing, self-isolation and close contact management on the Department of Health website.

The Test and Isolate National Protocols are available on the NSW Health website, which outlines patient information for people exposed to COVID-19. 

2. Managing acute COVID-19 diagnosis, treatment, monitoring, advice and de-isolation

After a patient has contacted the practice with a positive COVID-19 test result (from either a PCR or RAT), GPs must log this on their patient file and any other relevant documentation. 

The COVID-19 Active Case Management Pathway contains all of the initial assessment information for both adult and paediatric patients, as well as information on how to escalate severe cases, and the referral pathway for patients eligible for Sotrovimab.

Ongoing monitoring and treatment during the acute phase can be conducted by routine telehealth monitoring. This protocol is outlined on the Active Case Management Pathway under COVID-19 care Initial and ongoing telehealth monitoring during illness. The National COVID-19 Clinical Evidence Taskforce has a flowchart available on their website which details the stages of care from initial assessment, to supportive therapies and treatments, and follow-up care. GPs can find case management resources for patients on the COVID-19 Case Management Tools and Resources Pathway

GPs should also be aware of self-isolation, de-isolation, and testing resources that patients may have received from NSW health, which can be found on their website

3. Assisting in post-acute stage care

The Post-COVID-19 Conditions Pathway details screening tools for GPs to use in identifying, managing and referring patients with persistent COVID-19 symptoms, or additional symptoms beyond intial infection. The RACGP have also developed a Caring for patients with post–COVID-19 conditions Resource which contains advice and support for developing individualised plans for the ongoing management of post–COVID-19 conditions.

Additonal Resources