Pacific patients supported with Navigator Pilot Programme
“Nai and Malae have done such an amazing job for the patients we have referred on to them. I have received wonderful comments about the two of them. Our pacific people have been really grateful for all the visits and referrals to community services. I just wanted to show some appreciation and let the team know how important their roles have become for our patient population.” - Registered Nurse from a participating practice.
During COVID-19, AH+ was given the opportunity to respond to the rising need for social support in the Pacific community. From our experience and relationships we knew that having Pacific Community Navigators who were available to our GP practices would create long-lasting benefit for our Pacific people. From our AH+ enrolled population 29% of patients are Pacific. 53% of those patients are NOT enrolled with a practice that is categorised as a Pacific Provider, therefore many of our Pacific continue to miss out on the assistance they need, merely because funding is not available through their enrolled practice.
The AH+ Pacific Community Navigator Pilot Programme began in May 2020. Pacific patients who need additional health or social support can be referred to the programme by their GP and our two Pacific Navigators assist them to access and connect with the required service providers.
Above: AH+ Pacific Community Navigators Nainai Tipelu and Malae Sanders.
Navigators remain in touch with the referred patient until a successful ‘handover’ to a service provider takes place, if they find barriers to access such as long wait times or non-response, the referral will be taken back and connected with an alternative provider.
Although Community Navigators are not a new concept, our pilot introduces a unique 360-degree feedback loop where the referring GP is updated with their patient’s connection with outside support services, allowing for improved continuity of care.
The pilot began in four AH+ practices and has recently been expanded across our practice network. As at the end of October the team had received 70 referrals to the service and made connections for 65 of these, indirectly impacting a total of 239 people who were living in these homes.
With these numbers, we hope to access funding to launch this programme formally and further support the health and wellbeing of our enrolled Pacific patients.