The average waiting time for slightly more serious conditions at Changi General Hospital’s (CGH) Accident and Emergency (A&E) department has shortened by about seven minutes, thanks to the GPFirst Programme which launched last year.
The waiting time was calculated at 29 minutes in January 2014 and 22 minutes in December of the same year.
The GPFirst Programme encourages patients to first visit their General Practitioner (GP) clinic by offering a S$50 discount off the emergency department fee if they do so. Since the launch of the programme, about 3,800 patients have been referred to CGH’s A&E.
60 per cent of clinics located in the east are on the programme. Of these, 90 per cent have used the mobile application “GPFirst Aide”. The application provides convenient access to information which has helped some GPs reduce consultation time by about 20 per cent.
Said Associate Professor Mohan Tiru, Senior Consultant at CGH: “GPs sometimes have difficulty in risk stratification, that means informing the patient whether they have low, intermediate or high risk of complication for a specific disease.
The application helps increase awareness of clinical decision rules such that GPs can make informed decisions and patients can also make informed choices on their treatment, he said.