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Residential Aged Care Homes

Programs in Residential Aged Care Homes

In line with Department of Health and Aged Care we are transitioning to the use of Residential Aged Care Homes (RACH) rather than RACF for our newsletters and website.

Telehealth Equipment and Afterhours Care

Following recommendations from the Royal Commission, we have supported Residential Aged Care Homes (RACH) in procuring appropriate telehealth technology. This has assisted in supporting residents access virtual consultations with their primary care provider. This included a project introducing virtual reality consultations to some RACHs in the region.

We also supported the development of out-of-hours arrangements and action plans, in conjunction with general practitioners, to improve clinical support accessibility to prevent avoidable hospitalisations. 

Resources for continual improvement activities for telehealth in RACHs:


The WiseMind program provides psychological therapy services for people with mental illness or who may be at risk of developing mental illness living in RACHs across our region. WiseMind is designed for residents in a RACH experiencing mild to moderate mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety, that significantly interfere with their cognitive, emotional or social abilities. Referrals are made to WiseMind by either the resident’s usual GP or registered nurse.

Aged Care Support

Virtual Aged Care Service

To reduce risk of exposure and hospital presentations, the Virtual Aged Care Service (VACS) team has increased its workforce to provide additional assistance to RACHs with nurse practitioner and geriatrician support. This is outreach service operates from Monday to Friday, 8:00am - 4:30pm. Referrals can be made through a GP or from RACH staff. For more information on Rapid Health Decline in the Older Person, a website has been created as a tool to provide further support and guidance.

Contact VACS on 4734 1492 or 4734 1795.

Health Direct GP Support

The Health Direct GP Support 24/7 service can be contacted on 1800 022 222. RACHs are able to access this service at any time, including after hours, nights, weekends and public holidays. Using ISBAR handover:

  • Identify yourself to the triage nurse that you are calling from a residential aged care facility;
  • describe the Situation and the clinical Background;
  • the triage nurse will provide their Recommendation on when the GP will contact you back or whether to transfer the call to 000 operators 
Tier 1 Tier 2
GP will contact you within 15 minutes GP will contact you within 60 minutes
  1. You will be sent a link for Health Direct video call instructions.
  2. You do not need any software to download.
  3. You do not need any Medicare details.

NSW Ambulance Virtual Clinical Coordination Centre (VCCC)

NSW Ambulance VCCC provides a comprehensive and integrated ‘in-house’ Secondary Triage and Alternative Referral services (STARs) within a Virtual Clinical Coordination Centre (VCCC). The VCCC is responsible for the coordination and provision of safe alternate referral destinations and support the tasking of Ambulance resources as required through liaison with Control Centre Senior Operations Control Officers. When RACH staff call '000', they will speak to clinically trained staff in the VCCC ensuring that NSW Ambulance provides correct care and treatment pathway.


HealthPathways is a free online health information portal for healthcare professionals in our region, intended to be used during patient consultations. It provides information on how to assess and manage medical conditions (such as Dementia, COPD and falls) as well as how to request timely input from specialist services. HealthPathways can be utilised by RACH nursing staff to help support care planning. Local health professionals can submit a login request form on our website to access HealthPathways. 

Secure Messaging

Secure Messaging is an information-sharing platform that enables healthcare providers, including RACHs, to send and receive sensitive and confidential clinical information in a secure and encrypted environment. This may include referrals, reports, pathology and radiology requests, results and discharge summaries. We also work with GPs interested in receiving secure messaging from RACHs. If you are interested in accessing secure messaging, email the Healthy Ageing Team.

My Health Record

Residents can now nominate an authorised representative to assist with managing their My Health Record. The Australian Digital Health Agency provides a range of resources on how to manage clinical documents in My Health Record, which are available to families, patients, and healthcare professionals. This includes:

The Australian Digital Health Agency also has an Online Learning Portal with training resources that have been developed for health care providers and RACH staff. If you require further support with My Health Record access, please contact the Healthy Ageing Team.

RACH PHN Newsletter

The PHN emails a newsletter with related content on a monthly basis. To receive this newsletter, complete our online subscription form.

Recent Email Updates

More Information

For more information about these initiatives, please call Kelly Schmahl - Program Development Officer - Aged Care on 4708 8100 or contact us online.