Telephone triage training, consulting and expertise -- trusted by medical professionals since 1985
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Telephone Triage Training

“Triage is not an end-point but a beginning.”  Manchester Triage Group

TeleTriage Systems’ goal is to help telephone triage nurses get patients to the right level of care, at the right time for the right reason.  We develop the simplest, most effective tools to help them achieve that.

“Thank you so much for the materials that you’ve sent to me. In my new position, I was desperate for up-to-date information regarding risk management, scope-of-practice rules and any other information I could find. Your books and articles have answered all of my most important questions and so much more.

Thanks to you, I’m no longer just relying on my past 11 years of practical experience as a telephone triage nurse. I now have written ‘best practice’ standards in hand that I can refer to. Many thanks again for all you do.”

T.W., Clinical Quality Auditor, 24/7 Triage Line, California


Ms. Wheeler can customize any course to your requirements, or provide training programs as described. To be more economical, you can join with other local healthcare facilities or create your own community-based offering. The core course: “The Fine Art of Telephone Triage” can provide optional  CE Hours (8-30) for participants — real value for money.  The Community-Based Telehealth Team may be conducted for 4-8 hours for 4-8 CE Hours.

The full 2-Day Telephone Triage Training Program provides essential evidence-based and standards-based information that every telephone triage clinician needs. Courses can be taken over consecutive days or individually. All courses are taught by Sheila Wheeler and other experts with real world experience in telephone management of calls.

Sheila Wheeler has conducted training for medical residents at UCLA, VA hospitals and military facilities, Kaiser Permanente, County facilities, Physician Group Practices, and the Hospital Authority in Hong Kong, China. Ms. Wheeler has authored training manuals and guidelines. She is a CE Provider and has been approved by California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #10680Please listen to Ms. Wheeler’s recent presentation “To Err is Human, To Delay is Deadly” 

To learn more about hosting a Telephone Triage seminar, workshop or conference, please contact us.

Day 1: The Fine Art of Telephone Triage

Essentials of Evidence-Based Practice 

The “Fine Art of Telephone Triage”, first taught in 1984, is based on the classic training manual, Telephone Triage: Theory, Practice and Protocol Development.  Ms. Wheeler presents an updated, evidence-based and customized seminar and workshop on the essentials of telephone triage. Managers will receive a high-quality self-study or training of trainer program with optional 30 CE hours for all staff.

Regardless of what type of guidelines or protocols your facility uses, our Day One of Telephone Triage Training serves as a clinical training program for any medical call center; office, hospital, HMO, or clinic. It provides an introduction to the world of telephone triage for the novice as well as an update for the experienced practitioner. It covers the current healthcare environment including the impact of managed care on telephone triage. It is available on-site or off-site.

Utilizing medical evidence where possible,  clinicians are introduced to the field of telephone triage and the nursing process. In addition to addressing the common pitfalls and practice guidelines, participants will learn how to effectively elicit critical information to obtain a patient and problem history. Participants will practice prioritizing, using guidelines and documentation. Course lectures and discussions focus on the “red herrings” (potential distracters), “red flags” (alarm signals), and “rules of thumb” (common axioms or pearls used by experts to make decisions.) The final exercise will be an analysis and critique of audiotaped case studies from the perspective of evidence-based and standards-based practice.

Behavioral Objectives

Upon successful completion of The Fine Art of Telephone Triage, participants will be able to:

  1. Define three major trends in telephone triage
  2. Define three major practice pitfalls, risk management areas and remedies for each
  3. Apply concepts of evidence-based and standards-based practice
  4. Define key documentation requirements
  5. Analyze and critique 4-5 audiotaped case studies

Managers’ benefits include: a high-quality training of trainer program, including a complete system (guidelines, documentation form, Standards and training materials) with optional 30 CE hours for all staff, implemented in days, for a small investment.

To be more economical, your facility can host a seminar for local health organizations, or create your own community-based conference. If you are interested in hosting a seminar or workshop please please contact us.

Day 2:  The Community-Based Telehealth Team

Course Description

Telephone triage clinicians often refer patients to community agencies such as 911, Poison Control, Rape Crisis, Suicide Prevention and other hotlines and support groups. Referring patients to the right person, at the right time and place reduces stress on clinical call centers by curtailing inappropriate calls and enhancing patient satisfaction. Nurses need to know when, why and how to best refer callers to other members of the TeleHealth Team.

This community-based seminar utilizes speakers from your local community agencies. Speakers will review cultural and community trends as well as local policies relative to one or more of the following areas: crisis intervention, poison center, rape crisis, suicide prevention, parental stress, domestic abuse and poison prevention issues.

Coordinated, facilitated and moderated by Sheila Wheeler, this seminar provides an opportunity to clarify roles and define responsibilities and services, while setting the stage for building a strong TeleHealth Team network. This course may be presented as a stand-alone or an adjunct to “The Fine Art of Telephone Triage”. This telephone triage course is recommended for any medical call center, office or clinic, regardless of what type of guidelines or protocols are in current use. This course is only available on-site. There is no prerequisite for this course.

Behavioral Objectives

Upon successful completion of The Community-Based Telehealth Team, participants will be able to:

  1. Identify health challenges unique to the local community
  2. Identify key agencies that are part of the “TeleHealth Team”
  3. Describe functions of agencies of the TeleHealth Team
  4. Describe appropriate referral methodologies for each of these agencies

To be more economical, your facility can host a seminar for local healthcare facilities, or create your own community-based conference.  If you are interested in hosting a seminar or workshop please wn community-based conference!  If you are interested in hosting a seminar or workshop please contact us