The treating clinician is the clinician with responsibility for the patient at the time of urgency categorisation.
The clinical situation of the patient is taken to encompass the patient's medical condition and the patient's life circumstances, including issues related to activity limitations, restrictions in participation in employment and other life situations, carer responsibilities and access to carer and other supports.
A patient's classification may change if he or she undergoes clinical review during the waiting period. The need for clinical review varies with the patient's condition and is therefore at the discretion of the treating clinician.
Categorisation of waiting list patients by clinical urgency assists hospital management and clinicians in the prioritisation of their workloads. It gives health consumers a reasonable estimate of the maximum time they should expect to wait for care. Clinical urgency classification allows a meaningful measure of system performance to be calculated, namely the number or proportion of patients who wait for times in excess of the maximum desirable time limit for their urgency category (metadata item the overdue patient status).
Refer to Healthcare Improvement Unit (HIU) for elective surgery information reporting: <INTERNAL QH LINK NOT AVAILABLE>