Building workforce capacity for complex care coordination: a function analysis of workflow activity

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Heslop, Liza ORCID: 0000-0003-2761-5147, Power, R and Cranwell, K (2014) Building workforce capacity for complex care coordination: a function analysis of workflow activity. Human Resources for Health, 12 (1). 1 - 11. ISSN 1478-4491


Background The care coordination workforce includes a range of clinicians who manage care for patients with multiple chronic conditions both within and outside a hospital, in the community, or in a patient’s home. These patients require a multi-skilled approach to support complex care and social support needs as they are typically high users of health, community, and social services. In Australia, workforce structures have not kept pace with this new and emerging workforce. The aim of the study was to develop, map, and analyse workforce functions of a care coordination team. Methods Workflow modelling informed the development of an activity log that was used to collect workflow data in 2013 from care coordinators located within the care coordination service offered by a Local Health Network in Australia. The activity log comprised a detailed classification of care coordination functions based on two major categories – direct and indirect care. Direct care functions were grouped into eight domains. A descriptive quantitative investigation design was used for data analysis. The data was analysed using univariate descriptive statistics with results presented in tables and a figure. Results Care coordinators spent more time (70.9%) on direct care than indirect care (29.1%). Domains of direct care that occupied the most time relative to the 38 direct care functions were ‘Assessment’ (14.1%), ‘Documentation’ (13.9%), ‘Travel time’ (6.3%), and ‘Accepting/discussing referral’ (5.7%). ‘Administration’ formed a large component of indirect care functions (14.8%), followed by ‘Travel’ (12.4%). Sub-analyses of direct care by domains revealed that a group of designated ‘core care coordination functions’ contributed to 40.6% of direct care functions. Conclusions The modelling of care coordination functions and the descriptions of workflow activity support local development of care coordination capacity and workforce capability through extensive practice redesigns.

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Item type Article
DOI 10.1186/1478-4491-12-52
Official URL
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1110 Nursing
Current > Division/Research > College of Health and Biomedicine
Keywords Care coordination; Chronic disease management; Health care; Health workforce reform; Interprofessional teams; Workflow modelling
Citations in Scopus 11 - View on Scopus
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