Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) is more than just telemedicine. It aims to get the 'right knowledge in the right place at the right time' which aligns with Western Victoria Primary Health Network’s aim of 'the right care, in the right place, at the right time'.

The model changes the way education and knowledge are delivered to reach more health professionals in regional, rural and underserved regions. It works by linking inter-disciplinary specialist teams with multiple primary care clinicians through teleECHO clinics.

Experts mentor and share their expertise across a virtual network via case-based learning, enabling primary care clinicians to treat patients with complex conditions in their own communities. This spreads knowledge, including dissemination of best practice and promoting consistency in care and practice, expands capacity and accelerates collective wisdom. In addition, this allows people to get high-quality care when they need it close to home.

ECHO Model

Opioid dependence treatment is an unmet need in Victoria particularly in regional and rural areas. Addiction medicine specialists are a small workforce in the state and almost entirely based in metropolitan areas, meaning there are significant systemic gaps in access to expert consultation and care.

Western Victoria Primary Health Network has partnered with St Vincent's Health, Hume Area Pharmacotherapy Network (HAPN) and ORTiCare pharmacotherapy network to create an Opioid Management ECHO 'clinic' which is the first of its type in Australia to help address this need and give primary care clinicians access to addiction specialist support and advice.

The sessions run weekly on a Wednesday morning from 7:30 - 8:30am and can be joined from the comfort of your own home or office. To find out more and register your interest check out the Opioid Management ECHO website or contact one of the Western Victoria Primary Health Network Opioid Management Team listed below.

Contact

Geelong region  
Pene Wood 5222 0800
Hannah Buttigieg       5222 0800
Mark Davies 0408 593 344
Warrnambool region  
Amy Collins  5564 5888
Raj Samrai   5564 5827