In August, the RCA released an updated Direct Access Priority Process (DAPP) and related checklist. Originally developed in 2015, the DAPP supported implementation of the Assess & Restore Guideline to help older adults with a reversible loss of functional ability who are at risk of losing their independence. Since then, the Rehabilitative Care for Older Adults Living With/At Risk of Frailty: From Frailty to Resilience Framework has also been developed to reflect an updated standard of care.

Based on the new standards, the updated DAPP provides guidance on the early identification of individuals with restorative potential who require inpatient and/or community-based rehabilitative care. It also facilitates referrals directly from the community or emergency department, supporting timely access by providing practitioners with a direct pathway to rehabilitative care and helping to avoid acute care admissions.

The updated DAPP:

  • outlines referral pathways to community-based or bedded rehab services
  • delineates the steps to assess an older adult’s change from baseline function
  • helps determine an individual’s restorative potential
  • offers guidance for referral to the appropriate level of rehabilitative care

In addition, the RCA’s Checklist to Rule Out Acute Causes of Functional Decline provides guidance to determine whether there is an acute medical cause for functional decline.

The RCA is convening a working group of organizations that are interested in the early implementation of the DAPP. For more information, please contact Gabrielle Sadler, Project Manager.