What is eReferral?
Electronic Referral (eReferral) simplifies the referral process by enhancing communication between primary care providers and specialists/organizations and enabling quick and secure referrals to be sent and received through an electronic platform. eReferral is available to clinicians as part of the Ontario eServices Program.
The Ontario eServices Program delivers digital services (eConsult and eReferral) that support clinical workflows and facilitate smoother transitions in care and an improved patient experience. To learn more about how the eServices Program manages eConsult and eReferral, please visit the website. The Ontario eServices Program is co-managed by the Ontario eConsult Centre of Excellence and the eHealth Centre of Excellence and is funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health.
Who benefits from eReferral?
Clinicians, both senders and receivers, as well as patients benefit from the use of eReferral. The following are some of the key benefits of using eReferral:
Senders (Primary Care Providers)
- Ability to integrate with three of the most common EMRs (TELUS PS Suite® EMR, Accuro® EMR and OSCAR EMRs), so you can send referrals quickly and directly
- Updated standardized referral forms are automatically pre-populated with information from your EMR
- Updated referral status updates within your EMR
- See a map-based directory of available services and programs, complete with wait times, where available
- Reduced administrative tasks, such as the need to make follow-up phone calls
- Customized eReferral forms ensure that you receive complete referrals, eliminating the need to request additional information from the referrer
- eReferral forms include integrated clinical guidelines to support best practices, e.g., when it’s clinically appropriate to request an X-ray versus MRI
- Administrative tasks are lessened, such as the need to make follow-up phone calls
- Patients can choose to receive email notifications with referral status so they can track their referral from start to completion
- They can receive appointment instructions via email (i.e., do not eat two hours prior to appointment)
- Patients can confirm appointments directly from the email notifications
All primary care clinicians and specialists across Ontario are eligible to participate in the Ontario eServices Program.
All the referral destinations that are currently accepting eReferrals through Ocean are available through this document.
There is no cost for referring providers or referral receivers who are part of the Ontario eServices Program. Ocean user accounts and training are also available at no cost.
The program is funded to provide local change management resources to support your implementation, training, adoption, and sustained use. For assistance, please contact eReferral Engagement and Adoption Coordinator Alexander Russell.
Please contact eReferral Engagement and Adoption Coordinator Alexander Russell.