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Referring GPs and distant specialists should have explicit risk management protocols to cover clinical handovers within a dual-care (team care) video consultation system.
Clinical handover prior to a video consultation should encompass protocols such as:
- GPs sending referral letters to distant specialists including the rationale for proposing a video consultation and the proposed clinical support person if clinical support is indicated
- distant specialists giving reasonable advance notice of any clinical support including preparation, additional health information, medical consumables and medical equipment that may be required at the patient-end
- distant specialists providing patients with their standard information about clinical conditions, diagnostic investigations, procedures and medications or indicating how patients can access such information themselves
- clinical handovers between a GP and another support clinician at the patient-end.
Clinical handover at the conclusion of a video consultation should encompass protocols such as:
- distant specialists providing a verbal summary to confirm any diagnosis (where possible), including agreed diagnostic terminology and ongoing management
- distant specialists providing a verbal summary to confirm which follow-up action needs to be undertaken by the referring GP and which follow-up action needs to be undertaken by the distant specialist
- distant specialists and referring GPs summarising and documenting any follow-up action for which they are responsible as the final step in a video consultation
- clinical handovers between a GP and another support clinician at the patient-end
- distant specialists sending their response letters to GPs.