SRF019: Developing a telemedicine workflow for screening and referring patients to an existing Resource Navigation Program
Julia Alberth; Kellia Hansmann, MD, MPH; Allison Jenness, MD
Context: The Community Resource Navigation Program at UW Northeast Family Medical Center helps connect patients with resources for unmet social needs. Before COVID-19 patients were offered a screening questionnaire in clinic and could be introduced to the “Patient Navigators” by a warm handoff if they screened positive. Since the rapid introduction of telemedicine visits in March 2020, this workflow has not been adapted and fewer patients are being screened and referred to the “Patient Navigators”. It is of urgent interest that this workflow be adapted to meet the needs of stakeholders so that patients’ social determinants of health needs can be addressed in a timely and effective manner, especially in this limited resource era of COVID-19. Objective: 1) To understand the barriers and opportunities for updated telemedicine workflows to screen and refer patients to the “Patient Navigators”. 2) To develop an improved workflow that effectively addresses the barriers identified. Human Subjects Review: The project met criteria for Quality Improvement via UW-Madison Health Sciences IRB’s self-certification tool. Design: Semi-structured interview, content analysis, plan-do-study-act model. Setting: Primary care clinic at an academic health center, participants include clinic staff involved in the “Patient Navigators” screening or referral workflow. Intervention/ Instrument: Virtual alternatives for screening and referring patients to the “Patient Navigators”. Main and Secondary Outcome Measures: Number of successful referrals after intervention implementation; themes and subthemes about challenges and opportunities for integrating the “Patient Navigators” into telemedicine visits, such as communication barriers. Anticipated Results: Responses from stakeholders will indicate an overwhelming interest in incorporating the screening and referral process into the electronic health record and allowing the “Patient Navigators” to access this platform in order to improve communication and establish an efficient workflow. Conclusions: Key themes from the clinic staff and provider perspectives about the potential for updating screening and referring patients to the “Patient Navigators” during telemedicine visits. These findings will inform collaboration with other key stakeholders including the “Patient Navigators”, patients, and UW Health leadership to implement and evaluate an updated telemedicine workflow for this important program.