iRefer Pilot: Imaging Guidelines Trial

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​iRefer is a guideline to help doctors and other healthcare professionals decide on the most appropriate imaging to perform on their patients, and The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists (RANZCR) have started to operate a pilot for use by Australian general practitioners.

Generally, iRefer allows the GPs to choose the safest and most effective test and time for individual patients. This project aims to reduce the instance of repeated investigations and unhelpful diagnoses, thereby promoting quality care.

Furthermore, The Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care hopes that this iRefer pilot can reduce the cost of the healthcare system.

As of today, the iRefer project has unified almost 3,000 validated medical imaging guidelines and associated evidence into a single library, and the RANZCR wishes to demonstrate the suitability of this project in Australia to support the needs of GP referrers.

The recruitment of Australian GPs is ongoing and the pilot will run for four weeks this coming September 2022. After the pilot period, GPs will be asked to provide feedback to the researchers. The benefits of participating GPs include the following:

  • Induction to the program - $150

  • Pilot briefing - $150

  • Four check-in meetings - $600

  • Participating in an evaluation of the trial - $150

  • $45 per iRefer test check and data completion (maximum of 40 image test checks)

Moreover, participants can self-record their activities associated with the pilot to earn RACGP CPD points. The RACGP fully supports this pilot and for those who are interested, the form is available here.

iRefer Pilot: A potential Clinical Information Resource

According to The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP), the iRefer pilot can effectively help the GPs with good clinical decision support (CDS).

The RANZCR President, Sanjay Jeganathan states that iRefer is an important project so that patients can fully benefit from the best possible care.

Moreover, one of the interventions of the Task Force's Diagnostic Medicine Clinical Committee (DMCC) includes diagnostic imaging and this supports the expansion of CDS tools while ensuring that data collection will fit comfortably into GP workflows.

iRefer Pilot Supported by ACRRM

Members of the Australian College of Rural & Remote Medicine (ACRRM) are encouraged to participate in the short trial to review the iRefer imagining guidelines. This project is developed in the United Kingdom by the Royal College of Radiologists. 

Generally, the trial will not only help the patients get the healthcare benefits they are paying for but will also support the GPs, including the rural general practitioners in improving their services as well. 

For the past few years, the RACGP and ACRRM have been working together to improve the healthcare system in Australia, and through this project, the GPs can support one another in providing high-quality care to the community.

Participants for the iRefer pilot can register easily. However, the slots are limited.

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