NHS Sheffield tell us that many problems seen in Accident and Emergency (Casualty) could be better dealt with somewhere else. Sometimes this can mean that people who are seriously ill are not being seen quickly enough because they are being delayed by others with non-urgent problems. These non-urgent problems still need sorting out, but a busy Accident and Emergency department is often not the right place for this.
A guide to choosing the right NHS Service if you become ill:-
Self-Care (Hangover, grazed knee, sore throat, cough) – A lot of illnesses or symptoms can be treated in your home by using a well stocked medicine cabinet and by getting plenty of rest. Self care is the best choice to treat very minor illnesses and injuries.
Pharmacist (Diarrhoea, runny nose, painful cough, headache) – Your local pharmacist can give you advice on common illnesses and the medicines you need to treat them. To find your nearest pharmacy call NHS Direct: 0845 4647 or visitwww.nhs.uk/servicedirectories
GP (Unwell, vomiting, ear pain, backache) – Make an appointment to see a GPwhen you have an illness or injury that will not go away. Tel: 0114 2510040
NHS Direct (Unsure, confused, need help?) – Contact NHS Direct if you are ill and have any questions about health. Tel: 0845 4647 http://www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk/
NHS Walk-in-Services (Cuts, Strains, Rashes, Sprains) – Walk-in Services treat minor illnesses and injuries that do not need a visit to A&E. Sheffield’s walk-in services are open 365 days a year. For more information visit:www.sheffield.nhs.uk/walk-in
A&E or 999 (Choking, Chest Pain, Severe Bleeding, Blacking Out) – Accident and Emergency departments provide immediate emergency care for people who show the symptoms of serious illness or are badly injured. If you telephone 999 and tell the operator that there is a medical emergency, a response vehicle may be sent to your location. Emergency services are very busy. They should only be used in
very serious or life threatening situations.
An emergency is a situation where someone is experiencing a loss of consciousness, heavy bleeding, suspected broken bones, chest pain, breathing difficulties, an overdose, has swallowed something harmful, poisoning or has a deep wound.
BEFORE YOU GO TO A&E THINK!
Is this an emergency/accident?
Can I wait and see my GP?
Could another GP help me?
Would an alternative service be better and quicker