New telehealth platform helps practices and patients stop the spread

A new simple to operate and consumer friendly video call platform is now available to Western Australian general practices and patients, in a bid to ramp up capacity to combat coronavirus while keeping health care facilities, front line workers and patients safe.

Launched last week by WA Primary Health Alliance (WAPHA), in partnership with Healthdirect Australia, the Healthdirect Video Call platform allows clinicians to be able to deliver video consulting capability to their patients in a secure and confidential space.

To date, 100 practices have enrolled to take advantage of this service, each of whom will be provided with training and ongoing support.

Video Call provides a single, consistent entry point on the health services’ website for all patients via computer, phone or tablet, with no need for any further software to be installed.

From here, patients enter an online waiting area for their appointment, reducing the need for administrative staff to generate a separate link, code or dial-in information for each patient.

WAPHA Chief Executive Officer, Learne Durrington, said this was one of the most significant changes  seen in Australian general practice.

“Previously, eligibility criteria for bulk-billed telehealth and video consultations has only included suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19,” Ms Durrington said.

“Now that telephone and videoconferencing can be bulk billed for a much wider group of patients, and indeed accessed by everyone regardless of billing, it ensures primary care can continue to provide quality care and protect patients, general practices and their teams.

“While face to face visits are still preferable for many patients, telehealth can be an effective alternative, particularly in helping to preserve critical provider capacity for those in greatest need of in-person care.”

WAPHA staff have been trained to remotely assist general practices to connect with and utilise the video call platform, with good results reported following a trial in which several general practices.

Practices wishing to find out more and register for Healthdirect Video Call should visit Practice Assist.

For any queries, or further support please contact the Digital Health team at