Role of aboriginal health workers and liaison officers in quality care in the australian acute care setting: A systematic review

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective. To identify the contribution of Aboriginal Health Workers and Liaison Officers (AHWLOs) to quality of care in the acute health care setting in Australia. Methods. A systematic review of peer-reviewed literature focussed on the role of AHWLOs and quality/ quality outcomes. Multiple reviewers undertook study selection based on inclusion criteria and performed quality assessment using a validated tool. Results. The search revealed limited literature that met the inclusion criteria. This included 4 quantitative studies and 1 mixed methods study. The settings of the included studies were mental health and cardiac care units within various hospitals. Studies indicate that AHWLOs may have a positive influence on communication between health professionals and patients, rates of discharge against medical advice and continuity of care. However, methodological constraints amongst the limited studies means that a further evidence base is needed to establish the specific contributions of AHWLOs to quality care markers across acute care units and Australia wide. Conclusions. The role of AHWLOs in providing quality care in the acute care setting has received minimal research. The limited existing research highlights the importance of the AHWLO role. For example, AHWLOs may influence patient communication, discharge against medical advice and continuity of care within mental health and cardiac care units. Further research into the role of AHWLOs in these and other acute care settings is needed to assess the impact on a range of specific clinical quality markers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-433
Number of pages7
JournalAustralian Health Review
Volume44
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

Keywords

  • Aboriginal health services
  • acute health care
  • Australia
  • Aboriginal health workers
  • systematic review

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