Unscheduled Care means accessing services where you don’t have an appointment or you are not attending a GP surgery, clinic or hospital for a routine visit. This includes emergency and urgent care.
Unplanned care will be delivered through more integrated working. For example, single phone number access will direct patients to the appropriate care quickly and in the right place while Community GPs based in Accident & Emergency are already supporting patients to enable them to get the right treatment as close to home as possible.
The main point of contact for Unscheduled, Intermediate and Urgent Care is Andrew Ombler (Pictured right). To get in touch with Andrew please click on his photograph and an email will open up or you can call him on 0300 3000 542.
Focus on Emergency Care
NHS resources are limited and it’s important they are used correctly so as many people as possible can be treated as quickly and effectively as possible says Dr Rakesh Pathak .
“We need people to think about only using emergency services (Accident & Emergency Department / 999) when it is a real emergency. This benefits everyone by allowing a speedier service for the unwell and reducing pressure on A&E staff.
“As clinical leads we are helping ease the pressure on A&E by providing extra pairs of hands. From November 1st, a GP will working in A&E to direct patients to the best place for treatment. In fact I will be one of the GPs. There will also be other health and social care professionals on hand to provide immediate care in the community if needed,” said Dr Pathak.
All the GPs working in A&E are experienced in community medicine and have an in-depth knowledge of what services are out in the community.
As well as ensuring people get the correct level of treatment, it will ease waiting times and the amount of patients in A&E. This will save valuable time for critically unwell people and reduce the workload for hospital staff who are already under great pressure.
“The community can help us here as well,” added Dr Pathak. “If you turn up at A&E with a non-urgent condition you may not be seen or you may have to wait for a long time until they have dealt with the urgent cases.”
Choosing the correct service for your health problem and only using emergency services when they are really needed helps everyone in our community, including you. It allows the NHS to manage the cost of health care more effectively. It helps hospital emergency services treat the people who really need their help quickly and it means you will often get the correct treatment quicker and closer to home.
Choosing the right option could help you be treated quicker and cost you less in terms of time and travel says Dr Pathak.
- Self-care – A well-stocked medicine cabinet will help you with most minor illness and bugs. Especially through the winter months when flu and other viruses are more common.
- NHS Direct – By calling 0845 46 47 or visiting www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk you can check symptoms and get advice on treatment.
- Pharmacy – Your local pharmacist is a highly trained professional who can advise you on over counter products to help with minor ailments.
- GP – If you have an illness or injury that just won’t go away make an appointment to see your GP. As a highly qualified doctor they can ensure you’re are treated in the best manner
- A&E / 999 – Accident & Emergency departments and calling an ambulance by calling 999 should only be used in a critical or life threatening situation. They are there to save lives.