Goondir Health Services is an Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Service (ACCHS) providing primary health care and related health services to the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) communities from Oakey in the South East of Queensland to St George in the South West of Queensland.
We spoke to Chief Executive Officer, Floyd Leedie to find out more about the organisation’s unique quality management framework, which enables them to pioneer industry-leading innovations.
What is your approach to Quality Management at Goondir?
We have created a detailed and interconnected Quality Improvement Framework at Goondir, which enables us to manage safety, quality and risk within the organisation. Our framework is structured around the four pillars of governance that we operate under – Corporate Governance, Financial Governance, Resource Governance and Clinical Governance – and encompasses the tools, systems and processes we use to drive best business practices.
Because of the nature of our organisation, we do PDSA’s frequently and ongoing. We hold meetings to review Dashboards to get both a high-level view of key performance indicators and to drill down into focus areas. For example, if we have a goal to complete 80% health checks on our current client base, we can see how we’re tracking and which patients we need to target to meet this goal.
I heard someone say recently that the biggest area where health organisations fail is with their systems. Systems is only one part of how we do things at Goondir. You could have the best systems in the world, but if you don’t have the processes and tools to match, then they are no use to you. So, we have systems, processes and tools, to ensure that every part of our quality framework is united and working together as one. These three ingredients are essential for efficiency and being able to move the organisation forward.
What role does LogiqcQMS play in your Quality Framework?
Everything that goes into LogiqcQMS is aligned to our four pillars of governance, so it is inextricably linked to our Quality Framework. LogiqcQMS is the tool that keeps us and our framework on track and makes sure that everything that needs to be done, is actually done. All meeting minutes and actions are input into LogiqcQMS and tasks are allocated among the team, which means our meetings aren’t just talk fests!
Every document is uploaded to the platform – every funding agreement, every contract. Then we add tasks associated to those documents. We are up to about 230 reporting compliances and they are all loaded into the platform, and team members are responsible for maintaining compliances assigned to them. LogiqcQMS keeps everyone accountable. The support we receive from Logiqc has been beneficial as well, as they understand our framework and what we’re trying to achieve.
How does technology enable you to provide quality health services across regional areas? How are you innovating in this space?
Technology enables us to reach the most vulnerable members of our community, and country. It’s not just about providing good quality health care and improving their quality of life, but it also empowers them to manage their own chronic conditions. COVID-19 was really the catalyst for us to innovate the way that we deliver Virtual Health Services to our communities. While it would have been natural to follow the uptake in telehealth during this time, our fear was that our quality of care would take a nosedive without knowing our patients’ vitals. So, we hired our first virtual health manager in October last year and are now undertaking Virtual Health Services across all three clinics, including our mobile health clinic. So far, we have provided 100 high-risk chronic clients with units to monitor and record their health and vitals regularly from their homes. Clients’ health vitals are then sent to our clinical dashboard for our clinicians to intervene virtually where required, breaking down the access barrier.
Another space we’re innovating in is with our Virtual Reality Services which are currently being trialled in our Dalby clinic. An example of how this works is if a client has a virtual consultation with an exercise physiologist – they can wear the VR headset and hold a toggle attachment, and as the exercise physiologist instructs movement, the results will come through to them. Alongside Exercise Physiology, we are also trialling counselling via our VR services.
Both of these areas are currently being evaluated and we’re already seeing some myths being debunked. To our knowledge, we believe that we’re the only Aboriginal Medical Service that offers both Virtual Health Services and Virtual Reality – possibly because there is a preconception that Elders won’t take to technology, or that the Blackfellas wouldn’t look after the devices. What we’ve seen so far is the opposite. The Elders are the most engaged, there is an increase in compliance because we’re getting the data directly and some clients are going and getting their own protective equipment for the devices. While we’re already seeing positive outcomes from implementing these services, I believe the project that will make the biggest difference is InReach, which will streamline the patient experience through an interconnected care team (i.e. GP and inpatient), utilising both virtual services.
Technology is enabling us to innovate and diversify more than we could have ever known. It hasn’t just helped us to continue delivering high-quality services to clients through the pandemic. How we have applied technology is creating real change in the way clients take responsibility for the management of their health. And without technology to support the four pillars of our governance framework, this innovation and social change would not be possible.