The Royal Melbourne Hospital Virtual Fracture Clinic (VFC) was established in March 2017 after a funding grant from Better Care Victoria. The virtual model of fracture care was developed by the NHS trusts in Glasgow. The Royal Melbourne Hospital was first to trial and adopt this model of care in Australia.
The Virtual Fracture Clinic gives patients with simple orthopaedic injuries access to a specialist opinion and management without having to visit the fracture clinic in person.
An orthopaedic surgeon will review a patient’s x-rays to determine what treatment is needed, then the Virtual Fracture Clinic physiotherapist will then contact the patient by phone to explain the management. If the injury is more complex, the patient may still need to come to the clinic to see the specialist in person.
The Virtual Fracture Clinic triages all referrals from the The Royal Melbourne Hospital Emergency Department.
For patients living near the hospital, their GP may refer them straight to the Virtual Fracture Clinic without having to attend the emergency department either.
Setting up the Virtual Fracture Clinic (VFC)
Below are the documents and care plans used by The Royal Melbourne Hospital's Virtual Fracture Clinic team:
|Virtual Fracture Clinic Implementation Guide|
|RMH Virtual Fracture Clinic Non-operative Guidelines|
|Common injuries managed by the Virtual Fracture Clinic - information sheets for patients|
Clinical decision tools for the Emergency Department
|External Images Incorporation - Victorian Radiology Providers Compatible with RMH PACS|
Conferences and presentations
Virtual Fracture Clinics: a safe and effective alternative
Australian Orthopaedic Association Conference, Canberra, Australia, 2019
The safety and efficacy of a Virtual Fracture Clinic in a major Australian tertiary trauma hospital
NAHC Conference Presentation, National Allied Health Conference, Brisbane, Australia, 2019
The efficacy and safety of a surgeon-led Virtual Fracture Clinic in a level 1 trauma hospital
OTA Conference Poster, Orthopaedic Trauma Association Conference, Orlando, Florida, USA (2018)
Clinical Outcomes of Radial Head Fractures Managed in a Virtual Fracture Clinic
AOA Vic Branch Meeting Presentation, Australian Orthopaedic Association, Cape Shank, Australia, 2020