A 3 month prospective audit of physiotherapy referrals to a Community Rehabilitation Team and trial of alternative triage process.
The Community Rehabilitation Team (CRT) provides intermediate care and rehabilitation to individuals unable to leave their homes or who do not meet referral criteria for specialist services. Therapists are generalists whose specialism is managing complexity.
Current practice required all clinical staff (B4 and above) to triage referrals for suitability, and to assign appropriate referrals to immediate action (within 5 days) or a waiting list (up to 18 weeks), according to clinical need. This decision was commonly made directly from information contained within the referral.
Staff expressed anxiety and frustration with the process, and an inability to affect change or provide support to colleagues. Referrals from traditionally hierarchical superiors could be challenging, especially when declining inappropriate referrals, with concern that this may affect future commissioning.
This audit of physiotherapy referrals, aimed to classify our caseload through collection of quantitative data, and to trial an alternative triage process.