Success Story: Improving Emergency Dermatology Referrals

Dr. Jason Wale hoped that, by creating an emergency room dermatology referral form, patients he saw on shift would be able to access this specialist care quickly.  Because dermatologists don’t work in facility, there are few opportunities for ER physicians to interact with them.  When a patient presents with severe symptomatic dermatological disease, they could wait a long time to be seen by a dermatologist.

With the on-going goal of quality improvement and education on dermatological diagnoses and treatments, Dr. Wale worked with many dermatologists to create an ER-specific referral form and process.  The final form was presented to the physician team and an implementation plan was created in order to educate ER doctors of the new form and process.

Since the implementation of the new referral form, the wait time to seen by a dermatologist has been reduced. Dr. Wale stated, “we now have a direct and rapid line of referral to dermatologists for urgent cases presenting to the ER.”  Additionally, and as a result of the effectiveness of this project work, Dr. Wale is now working on repeating this process to establish a direct line of referral to Victoria Immunologists for patients with first presentation of anaphylaxis.

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