The primary care sector is a critical partner for early psychosis intervention (EPI) programs in supporting mutual clients. To support comprehensive care and transition between services, EPI programs have a responsibility to work collaboratively with primary care providers. Communication is the cornerstone of an effective relationship. To facilitate this relationship, the Early Psychosis Intervention Ontario Network (EPION) developed a simple correspondence template. This template, the EPION Primary Care Communication Tool, is designed to help EPI programs share information about a client with their primary care providers in a concise and timely manner, and facilitate comprehensive care and transitions. EPION’s Partnerships, Education, Access and Knowledge Translation (PEAK) working group developed the tool based on information gathered through an Ontario-wide survey of primary care providers in November 2017. It helps EPI staff give primary care providers a comprehensive snapshot of a client’s progress while in EPI care, ideally every six months, as clinically indicated, and when a client is preparing to transition out of EPI services. Preliminary evidence from EPI programs show that the tool has very simple structure to capture all the domains and areas, as well as next steps. It’s easy to use because it is brief and it can be tailored to suit the program and client. This tool also provides prompts allowing programs to provide a comprehensive snapshot of the client to their primary care providers. Programs have also seen an increase in the number of primary care teams following up with them after receiving the completed tool.
- Understand and explain the importance of collaborating and communication between EPI programs and primary care providers in supporting mutual clients.
- Demonstrating how to use the EPION Primary Care Tool to facilitate
- Identify and distinguish all the appropriate domains and areas, as well as next steps that can be tailored to suit sharing information between the program and client, with their primary care providers.