Western Victoria Primary Health Network (WVPHN) will soon roll out the GoShare patient education platform to 800 health professionals in Western Victoria.
GoShare allows health professionals to share engaging, timely and evidence-based health resources with patients, empowering them to play a more active role in their healthcare.
Developer of the platform and founder of health promotion company Healthily Dr Tina Campbell said GoShare is an easy-to-use tool for health professionals, which includes health information in a variety of formats (video, animation, text, apps) to accommodate a range of learning styles. Used to complement face-to-face or telehealth interactions, the resources are designed to build the knowledge, skills and confidence of patients, particularly in relation to the self-management of chronic conditions.
CEO WVPHN Leanne Beagley said the size and spread of the region meant there was a need for a new approach: “With a population in excess of 600,000 people, Western Victoria Primary Health Network (PHN) is focused on ensuring better health outcomes for the rural and regional communities across western Victoria.
“We are partnering with Healthily to provide local general practitioners and other health care providers with up to date health information for their patients. GoShare is an innovative patient self-management technology platform that will support people to be as independent as possible if they live with a chronic condition, will help prevent complications and potentially the need to go into hospital.”
Dr Tina Campbell said there was now considerable evidence that interventions that promote patient empowerment and the acquisition of self-management skills are effective in diabetes, asthma, and other chronic conditions. In addition, research shows that Australians of all ages are embracing the digital life. According to the ACMA 2014 Report 92% of adult Australians use the internet with 68% of those aged 65 years engaging online. In 2014, people aged 55 and over showed the largest increase in app downloads.
GoShare’s functionality makes it easy for health professionals to provide care that is responsive to individual patient preferences and needs. Ms Beagley said: “The platform is ‘patient-centred’ supporting health professionals to efficiently tailor and personalise information that responds to questions, concerns or interests expressed in a face-to-face or telephone consultation.
“It’s about ensuring patients have access to the right information at the right time, to gain the knowledge, skills and confidence necessary to manage their health to the best of their ability.”
“In essence, the health professional sends an online ‘information prescription’ to their patients or clients. Depending on the preference of the client these content bundles can be sent via SMS or email,” Dr Tina Campbell said.
Another aspect of the GoShare patient education is the ability of patients to share information with their carers, families and friends.
“Patients and their families play a central role in the successful management of chronic health conditions,” Dr Campbell said. “This includes appropriately monitoring their health, regulating lifestyle behaviours, and dealing effectively with the emotional and social stresses associated with being chronically ill.
“Research proves that listening to people in similar circumstances sharing their health experiences and insights is a very effective way of engaging patients and improving their confidence about their ability to self-manage their condition.”
Western Victoria PHN will roll out the GoShare platform in September this year. In stage one, the tool will primarily be used within general practice, followed by a rollout to pharmacies.