Dispatch Health - https://www.dispatchhealth.com/locations/wa/tacoma/
- Karrie Austin, Dispatch Health
- I’m from Tacoma, a nurse for 17 years, last 13 at Multicare.
- Dispatch health was brought in by Multicare. Goals of the service are to
- Decrease ER use
- Decrease patient length of stay
- Decrease hospital re-administion
- ERs drive healthcare costs.
- Dispatch health – mobile urgent care and Emergency Room – providing service in home or wherever it is safe to do so.
- Want to go to Nativity House and Tacoma Rescue Mission.
- Will go wherever that may be – but need some privacy and space to work, though.
- We have rovers – Nissan rogues – travel with EMT and nurse practitioner. Provide medical care in patient home. Have direct access to board certified ER physician.
- Patients get referred or call directly – there is an app too, as well as a website - https://www.dispatchhealth.com/locations/wa/tacoma/
- Go through a risk stratification process – like a Schmitt-Thompson protocols (https://www.stcc-triage.com/ if you’re ever curious –ed.) - with a few extra added layers. We don’t do anything time sensitive – no chest pain, bright red bleeding – which will rule out dispatch health or escalate to 911 call or recommend ER visit . For the rest of folks we can treat, arrive in 60 to 90 minutes. If we are pushed back farther, we call so folks know when we will be there.
- When we arrive, go through the assessment and may escalate (3% of the time) if needed.
- Travel with lab tools, Intravenous and oral medications. Can do sutures, staples, splinting (non-displaced), can do all sorts of other stuff - COPD, CHS (probably go this abbreviation wrong – she was talking fast…-ed), can do albuterol, prednisone, we carry a big pharmacy – but no narcotics. No Benzodiazepines, but can write prescriptions for them.
- We always connect in with the Primary Care Provider and the referral source. If assisted living or home health, they get a copy as well. We serve anyone and everyone 3months old thorugh the lifespan.
- If no Primary Care Provider, we have access to the Multicare access center, where they can get a Primary Care Provider for whatever insurance they have
- We are in with all major insurance payer, including Medicaid and Medicare – but not Kaiser and Tricare (great, a list of two insurance companies they don’t work with, and one is my provider… -ed).
- Maureen – are you in network for other Health Maintenance Organizations (MCOs)? Karrie – we bill as urgent care, wo we typically fall under that insurance coverage umbrella. Billed to the client at their urgent care copay - $20-$30, or $30-$50. Questions – if not insured or are homeless? Karrie - if the care Manegement team refers them, will work with Multicare charity care on the backside.
- Will serve anyone
- Questions - What if clients are in shelter and don’t have insurance? Karrie – we have flat rate fee – no matter the care, it never exceeds $275.
- Tring to work with Nativity House and Tacoma Rescue Mission – working to get folks on insurance – to get them on health insurance. We will do our best to get folks tied in to services.
- If homeless, we will work to coordinate a location that is safe for us to see them.
- We’ve been in the market for 1 month
- Mitch – are you working with Tracy Green and Mobile Community Intervention Response Team (MCIRT)? Karrie – yes, working with them. We don’t do behavioral health as a primary complaint. We do go out if folks have a medical complaint. If they have a mental health connection, we work with that, or assign it.
- Questions - How many mobile units. Karrie - We have 2 units working 10 hour shifts – seeing 10 patients per day. There is typically 45-50 minutes of facetime, but we’ll stay how long it takes. 20 patients per day. Will bring on another team when we are starting to reach capacity of current team.
- 8am-10pm 7 days per week. We’ll work to be available to the community.
- James – want to talk about young adult shelter. Can you have office hour slots at a shelter. Our young adults need STD testing, too. Karrie – maybe one of our cars could be designated to a specific locations.
- Question - Even just coming in for an hour, that would be very beneficial. Karrie – having a discussion with Nativity House – they have been gracious with us there.
- We are in Tacoma and all of Pierce County, except the back of Graham and Eatonville and much of Key Peninsula – because of the challenge of drive times. And South King County. As we grow, we’ll have more geographic expansion.