Direct to an emergency department for:

  • Suspected or confirmed interstitial lung disease with
    • severe breathlessness
    • worsening hypoxaemia
    • new arrhythmia or chest pain.

Criteria for referral to public hospital service

  • Suspected or confirmed interstitial lung disease that requires further advice on, or review of, the current management plan, or management of treatment related adverse effects (e.g. dyspnoea associated with chest pain or palpitations, stridor, significant hypoxaemia, unintended weight loss)
  • Confirmation of suspected diagnosis and advice on management plan.

Information to be included in the referral

Information that must be provided

  • Description of onset, nature, progression, recurrence and duration of symptoms of interstitial lung disease
  • How symptoms are impacting on activities of daily living including impact on work, study, school or carer role
  • Findings on physical examination, including oxygen saturation
  • Chest x-ray(including date and details of the diagnostic imaging practice)
  • Recent (in previous 6 months) full blood examination (FBE) results
  • Smoking history (cigarettes and all forms of tobacco, nicotine, vaping and cannabis)
  • History of occupational or environmental exposure risks, or radiotherapy treatment (if relevant)
  • Details of previous medical management including the course of treatment(s) and outcome of treatment(s)
  • Current and complete medication history (including non-prescription medicines, herbs and supplements)
  • History of any other inhalant use, including if the patient is still using
  • Past medical history and comorbidities (particularly connective tissue disorders).

Provide if available

  • Spirometry
  • Height
  • Weight
  • Other lung function tests
  • Rheumatoid factor (RhF) levels
  • High resolution CT chest (including date and details of the diagnostic imaging practice)
  • Date of COVID-19 infection(s), provide month and year
  • If the person identifies as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander.

Additional comments

The Summary and referral information lists the information that should be included in a referral request.

Where appropriate and available the referral may be directed to an alternative specialist clinic or service.

Referral to a public hospital is not appropriate for

Not applicable.