Useful Management Information

  • If you have a reason to suspect a child in Queensland is experiencing harm, or is at risk of experiencing harm, you need to contact Child Safety Services

Minimum Referral Criteria

Does your patient meet the minimum referral criteria?
Category 1 (appointment within 30 calendar days)
  • Recurrent waking from sleep with abdominal pain
  • Suspicion of serious gastrointestinal disease: persistent vomiting, weight loss or failure to thrive, dysphagia
  • Extra-intestinal symptoms e.g. fever, rash, mouth ulcers, joint pain
  • Blood or mucus in the stool
  • Presence of anaemia or abnormalities of liver function tests
  • Missing 50% or more of school or other history to suggest significant burden of symptomatology
  • Children under 6 years with symptoms for more than 1 month at the time of referral
Category 2 (appointment within 90 calendar days)
  • Most other referrals for chronic and recurrent abdominal pain
Category 3 (appointment within 365 calendar days)
  • No category 3 criteria

If your patient does not meet the minimum referral criteria

  • Assessment and management information may be found on a range of conditions at HealthPathways
  • If the patient does not meet the criteria for referral but the referring practitioner believes the patient requires specialist review, a clinical override may be requested:
    • Please explain why (e.g. warning signs or symptoms, clinical modifiers, uncertain about diagnosis, etc.)
  • Please note that your referral may not be accepted or may be redirected to another service

Essential Referral Information

  • Current height and weight and include date of measurement
  • History of pain:
    • how long has the child been experiencing recurrent abdominal pain?
    • location of the abdominal pain
  • Report presence or absence of concerning features
    • Recurrent waking from sleep with pain.
    • Non midline pain
    • Weight loss
    • Fevers
    • Blood or mucus mixed in stool
    • Waking at night to stool
    • Clubbing

Additional Referral Information

Highly desirable information – may change triage category

  • Detailed history of pain (including location, severity, onset and timing, aggravating and relieving factors and associated symptoms)
  • Past history of abdominal surgery
  • History of significant life disruption due to symptoms (emergency presentations, days of school missed in last month, other examples)
  • Toileting history - stool frequency, consistency, pain, soiling, presence of blood
  • Family history including of bowel diseases (crohns, ulcerative colitis, peptic ulcer or inflammatory bowel disease [IBD])
  • Details of treatments offered and efficacy
  • Abdominal examination findings
  • Height/weight/head circumference and growth charts with prior measurements if available.

Desirable information- Will assist at consultation

  • Other past medical history
  • Immunisation history
  • Developmental history
  • Medication history
  • Significant psychosocial risk factors (especially parents mental health, family violence, housing and financial stress, department of child safety involvement)
  • Other physical examination findings inclusive of CNS, birth marks or dysmorphology
  • Any relevant laboratory results or medical imaging reports, urinalysis result

Investigations to consider if indicated (use clinical judgement)

  • FBE with differential ESR U&E LFTs
  • Coeliac screen aTTG and total IgA level
  • Iron studies
  • Urinalysis
  • Stool PCR for bacteria and parasites
  • Abdominal USS, if clinically indicated
  • Faecal calprotectin
Last updated 6 October 2021

Send Referrals To

Smart Referrals

Preferred Method
About Smart Referrals

Secure Web Transfer

Send to: Gold Coast Health Service District

Internal Referrals

Paediatric Medicine (E-Blueslips)


(07) 5687 4497


Paediatric Referral Centre
Gold Coast University Hospital
1 Hospital Boulevard
Southport QLD 4215


1300 744 284

Related HealthPathways

No directly related pathways found

Service Availability

Dr Susan Moloney
Medical Director Paediatric Medicine (General Paediatrics)


Gold Coast University Hospital

If you would like to send a named referral, please address it to the specialist listed above, who will allocate a suitably qualified specialist to see the patient. Alternatively, you can view a full list of our specialists.

Child Safety

If you have a reason to suspect a child in Queensland is experiencing harm, or is at risk of experiencing harm, contact Department of Children, Youth Justice and Multicultural Services . Please consider if mandatory reporting applies.

Gold Coast Health - For Clinicians
© The State of Queensland 1995-2021 | Queensland Government
Queensland Government acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land and pays respect to Elders past, present and future.