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Pathways – Streamlining referrals, improving patient care

What is Pathways?

Pathways is an online resource that provides family doctors and their office staff quick access to current and accurate referral information, including wait times and areas of expertise of specialists and specialty clinics. Pathways can also provide access to hundreds of patient and physician resources, as well community service and allied health information that is categorized and searchable.

Who can use Pathways?

Access to Pathways is limited to family doctors who are members of a division of family practice, their staff, and/or nurse practitioners , as well as specialists who fall within the geographic boundaries of these divisions.

Who created Pathways?

In 2014, the Fraser Northwest Division of Family Practice developed Pathways as a tool to help improve the process of family doctors referring patients to specialists and specialty clinics. It is now accessible by divisions across BC.

Who uses it now?

Members of 30+ divisions of family practice across BC now use Pathways, representing all health authorities in the province, with expansion expected to be fully complete in 2018. 

How is Pathways funded?

Funding for Pathways is provided through a joint collaboration between Doctors of BC and the BC government. Individual divisions of family practice also contribute operational funding at a local level.

How do patients benefit from Pathways?

Pathways streamlines and simplifies the patient referral process, which results in more appropriate referrals, a reduction in re-referrals, and thereby more efficient  patient care. The information in Pathways (e.g., wait times, details on specific areas of practice) enables family doctors to identify the most appropriate care provider to address their patients’ needs in as timely a manner as possible.

How is Pathways organized?

A provincial Pathways support team provides the technical infrastructure to operate Pathways and also provides administrative support to help guide divisions of family practice in their implementation and maintenance of Pathways. Individual divisions also provide Pathways Administrators to curate specialist and clinic data within their local region. 

For more information, contact Ryan Lammertsen, Pathways Executive Director.


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