East Metropolitan Health Service Hospital Liaison GP Update

Bentley Health Service (BHS) Antenatal Clinics phased reopening

As part of a phased approach, some antenatal care is recommencing at Bentley Health Service (BHS) under the care of the Armadale team. Please continue to send antenatal referrals for patients residing in the Bentley area to Armadale or KEMH as per existing arrangements* until further notice.

After referral to Armadale Antenatal Clinic, clinic staff will arrange for Bentley-area patients to have their antenatal care at Bentley where this is suitable.

The BHS birthing ward remains closed and BHS antenatal clinic patients will birth at Armadale Hospital. Please direct concerns arising between clinic appointments about patients receiving antenatal care at Bentley to the Armadale Maternity Service.

*Please send antenatal referrals to EMHS Obstetrics directly to the relevant hospital rather than to CRS.

For Bentley-area antenatal patient referrals:

Gynaecology referrals continue to be referred via the CRS.

Dr Sarah Wade
Director General Practice, Armadale Health Service

Dr Jacquie Garton-Smith
Hospital Liaison GP, Royal Perth Bentley Group

June 2021
EMHS Voluntary Assisted Dying Program

East Metropolitan Health Service (EMHS) is implementing a Voluntary Assisted Dying (VAD) Program to support VAD becoming a legally available option from 1 July 2021.

EMHS Clinical Lead for VAD, Dr Clare Fellingham, says upholding patient autonomy and dignity is fundamental to the care we provide across EMHS hospitals, and the EMHS recognises that VAD will soon be available to eligible patients in accordance with the Voluntary Assisted Dying Act 2019 (WA).

“As a health service provider dedicated to delivering excellence in health care to the community we serve, we will be working within the legislative framework to ensure VAD is accessible from 1 July 2021 when the law comes into effect”.

Please direct all GP queries about VAD to the Statewide Care Navigator Service (SWCNS). From July 1, the SWCNS will also be accepting VAD referrals and patient queries. The SWCNS can be contacted by email and phone during standard work hours (8:30 am – 5:00 pm) on VADcarenavigator@health.wa.gov.au or (08) 9431 2755.

VAD assessments will be provided at EMHS by participating practitioners who have undergone rigorous training approved by the Department of Health WA , and referral pathways are being developed in conjunction with the SWCNS. In addition, EMHS are appointing a dedicated VAD program manager to support patients and their families should their VAD journey occur at EMHS.

Further information is available on the DoH Voluntary Assisted Dying and the EMHS Voluntary Assisted Dying webpages.

Dr Jacquie Garton-Smith,
Liaison GP, Royal Perth Hospital
Mondays and Thursdays

Important changes to Gastroenterology ASI at Bentley Hospital

Effective immediately, gastroscopies and colonoscopies will no longer be delivered at Bentley Hospital under the Ambulatory Surgery Initiative (ASI). These procedures will instead transition to direct access endoscopy only.

Patients already on the waiting list will not be affected by these changes.

For new referrals, Bentley Hospital will no longer accept gastroenterology endoscopy referrals for “out-of-catchment” patients and, as a result, it is anticipated East Metro Health Service catchment patients will have earlier access to direct endoscopy.

The referral process for GPs will still be via the Central Referral Service (CRS). Pending an updated endoscopy referral form, the existing referral form (mentioning ASI) can still be used and CRS will forward referrals of the Royal Perth Bentley Group-catchment patients to Royal Perth Bentley Group.

Dr Jacquie Garton-Smith,
Liaison GP, Royal Perth Hospital
Mondays and Thursdays

October 2020
EMHS 2020 Communicating for Safety GP Survey update

Many thanks to the 109 respondents who gave their time to help the East Metropolitan Health Service (EMHS) understand how GPs are finding communication from Royal Perth, Bentley, Armadale, Kalamunda and St John of God Midland Public Hospitals and how this can be improved.

There was a good representation of GPs responding from practices across the EMHS metropolitan catchment, as well as rural and remote areas, and from mainstream GPs as well as Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services GPs.

The feedback provided was rich in detail and extremely valuable. Results are currently being analysed. Key findings will be published in future editions of GP Connect, along with actions planned.

August 2020
Royal Perth Bentley Group – Discharge of Outpatients not booked or planned for further review

A routine audit has identified patients previously been seen in Royal Perth or Bentley outpatients who do not have any further appointments booked or planned with that speciality but have not formally had their outpatient care discharged from our database.

Letters will be sent to the recorded GP of any patient who will be discharged under this audit.

Patients will receive a letter if their last outpatient appointment with that speciality was in the past two years.

 If your patient requires further outpatient care that was not envisaged at the time of last outpatient review, please re-assess the patient and send an updated referral to the Central Referral Service.

Dr Jacquie Garton-Smith, Hospital
Liaison GP, Royal Perth Hospital
Mondays and Thursdays

July 2019
The ‘Tackling aging and life limiting illnesses: Helping our patients to make the most of life’ GP update was held on Saturday 31 August by East Metropolitan Health Service (EMHS) including Armadale Kalamunda Group, Royal Perth Bentley Group and St John of God Midland Public Hospital clinicians in partnership with WA Primary Health Alliance; HealthPathways WA. 40 GPs attended with very positive feedback and evaluation, especially on the topics selected, and the discussion and networking opportunities.

Sessions on “Helping Our Older Patients Live Better with Chronic Conditions” included quizzes and presentations on osteoporosis, COPD and heart failure.

“Helping Our Frail Older Patients to Stay at Home” provided an overview of EMHS older adult services and the opportunity for GPs to meet and discuss referral pathways and cases with staff. HealthPathways WA gave a rundown on useful pathways in this space.

The “Clarifying Confusion” practical case studies relating to Delirium, Dementia and “Can I drive, Doc?” led to some lively table discussions, followed by some pointers and resources on these issues.

Our final session was on “Person-Centred Care when Life is Limited”. The Goals of Patient Care initiative was explained and we workshopped opportunities to provide better communication and collaboration around Goals of Patient care and Advance Care Planning discussions. The day wrapped up with a talk on assessing capacity.

Selected presentations from this and previous events are available on the RPH website. There is a valuable information on these topics and more on HealthPathways WA, especially under the Older Adult’s Health and End of Life sections. Please contact healthpathways@wapha.org.au if  need to arrange a login.

June 2019
Inspiring a recovery and improved physical health focus for people with mental health issues- EMHS Integrating Mental Health GP Workshop

Over 40 GPs joined East Metropolitan Health Service (EMHS) including Armadale Kalamunda Group, Royal Perth Bentley Group and St John of God Midland Public Hospital clinicians and WA Primary Health Alliance; HealthPathways WA staff on Saturday 18 May for a Mental Health GP Workshop. GPs shared valuable insights into their experiences of patients with mental health issues, the challenges they face and what support would be helpful. They also identified some key areas to improve integration of care across primary and specialist services, which will help inform future EMHS planning.

After an EMHS mental health services overview and a HealthPathways WA demonstration to help GPs navigate this complex space, we heard confronting statistics on the physical health gap for people with mental health issues and the importance of GPs helping to address these issues. See the Physical Health Check for Mental Health Patients health pathway for more information.

It was heartening to hear  there is great recovery potential for people affected by alcohol or meth addiction, personality disorders or at risk of suicide. Attendees were given useful strategies which can be helpful in a GP setting. Click here to download copies of the presentations or see links to the following useful resources :



Click here to find out more about the next EMHS/WAPHA GP event Tackling Aging and Life-limiting Illnesses: Helping our patients make the most of life  on Saturday August 31 at RPH.


Dr Jacquie Garton-Smith
Hospital Liaison GP, Royal Perth Hospital
Generally available: Monday and Thursday