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Development of a new emergency care classification

In 2013–14, the Independent Health and Aged Care Pricing Authority (IHACPA) undertook an investigative review of national and international emergency care classification systems to recommend options for improving the classification in future years.

The overall recommendation from the investigative review was for the staged development of a new classification system, to replace Urgency Related Groups (URGs) and Urgency Disposition Groups (UDGs).

Emergency department principal diagnosis short list

IHACPA is currently developing a principal diagnosis short list in order to provide a nationally consistent approach to principal diagnosis reporting in emergency departments. The emergency department International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, Tenth Revision, Australian Modification (ICD-10-AM) principal diagnosis short list will be a key component of the new emergency care classification system.

Australian emergency care classification development

The new classification system will be more clinically meaningful and will better account for patient complexity compared to the current URG and UDG classifications. IHACPA will commence classification development following completion of the costing study.

Emergency care costing study

IHACPA has completed a comprehensive emergency care costing study in a number of jurisdictions to develop a better understanding of the costs associated with the delivery of emergency care services. The information collected from the costing study will inform the development of a new emergency care classification. The costing study includes an activity and cost data collection period from April to June 2016. The Emergency care costing and classification project cost report provides an overview of the methodology and key outcomes of the costing study.

Emergency care clinician time consensus study

The Emergency care clinician time consensus study was undertaken as part of the Emergency care costing and classification project. The consensus study sought to obtain time estimations for the same set of activities and procedures collected in the costing study. These estimates were provided by clinicians through a Delphi consultation process. The purpose of the consensus study was to validate and supplement the results of the costing study.

Key publications

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