‘Realist review’ on rural patient transfer and transportation now available

The Applied Policy Research Unit (APRU) of the Centre for Rural Health Research recently released “Rural Patient Transport and Transfer: Findings From a Realist Review.” This report was commissioned by the Rural and Remote Division of Family Practice to answer the question, “what are the best practice models for transferring medically complex rural patients to secondary/tertiary care?”

The report’s ‘realist’ approach identifies “what works, for whom, in what circumstances, in what respects and how.” This approach is intended “to generate a detailed, practical, and sophisticated understanding of the contextual complexity that is needed when making policy and programming decisions.” The APRU examined both academic literature as well as “grey literature” that reviewed emergency transport systems across Canada  as well as comparable international jurisdictions.

The report proposes recommendations through a rural-centric lens that suggests an evidence-based reorganization of the system that meets the needs of rural patients and that recognizes the essential role of rural providers. All of the recommendations are underscored by the need for a rurally-sensitive, system wide,
and transparent population-based quality improvement framework.

Download the Rural Patient Transport and Transfer realist review now, or visit the Rural and Remote Division of Family Practice’s web site to read the report online.