Rapid Access to Consultative Expertise (RACE)


RACE cover

The challenge

General practitioners were unnecessarily referring patients to the emergency department because the wait time for specialist appointments was too long. As a result, the emergency department had an unnecessarily high demand because they were treating patients with non-urgent conditions.

The organization

Providence Health Care is a seven-facility Catholic health care system in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

The approach

Established a hotline called RACE or “Rapid Access to Consultative Expertise” to help connect general practitioners with specialists. To effectively run the hotline, Providence kept specialists on-call during the workday to support general practitioners and to help reduce emergency department demand.

The result

One-third of patients whose general practitioners used the RACE line avoided a trip to the emergency department.

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