Case study: Priority Primary Care Centres

Case study: Priority Primary Care Centres

20 December, 2023

PPCCs provide GP-led care to people who need urgent care, rather than an emergency response and each one is partnered with a busy emergency department.

Examples of the low acuity conditions that are addressed by PPCCs include fractures, burns and mild infections. The centres are open after hours (up to 16 hours a day, seven days a week), when regular GPs are unavailable, and have diagnostics on site or nearby.

By diverting patients with less acute health needs away from emergency departments, PPCCs reduce demand and wait times in the ER, while delivering the urgent care these patients need – closer to home.

The response from people using the centres has been very positive; with data proving PPCCs have a positive impact on wait times. Our service partners also continue to share patient stories like Joseph’s. As a typically, active 11-year-old, Joseph loves to play sport. On a recent Saturday while on the soccer field, Joseph collided with another player and hit the ground. Parents and onlookers treated him at the scene, with him conscious and not vomiting. The first aid response team suggested that he be taken to the Forest Hill PPCC.

On arrival, Joseph was assessed by a doctor, and had a neurological and head assessment. His cuts were cleaned, and he was sent home with advice on the warning symptoms to look for following a head trauma, as well as analgesic advice and rest suggestions. Sixty minutes after his accident, Joseph was home with a discharge letter for his GP. His recovery was monitored via a follow up phone call by the treating doctor the next day. All PPCCs work in collaboration with their local health services and Ambulance Victoria. Bi-directional referral pathways have been developed with emergency departments along with referral pathways into specialist clinics as required.