By Lucy Ashton
Amidst unprecedented and unsustainable demand on emergency services, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde is urging the public not to attend A&E without a very urgent or life-threatening condition and to use more appropriate services instead.
A&Es across the health board remain extremely busy, with all operating well over normal capacity which is having a huge impact on service provision.
Unless very urgent or life-threatening, patients should not attend A&E without first calling NHS24 on 111. This will ensure they are directed to the most appropriate urgent service for their needs and A&Es are safeguarded those who need them.
Dr Scott Davidson, Deputy Medical Director for Acute Services for NHSGGC, said: “Our A&Es remain open and continue to assess, treat and admit emergency patients, however they are extremely busy and staff are facing huge challenges to ensure we’re able to treat patients safely and as quickly as possible. We continue to see large numbers of people attending with symptoms that could be managed by speaking to a GP, local pharmacy, or, by calling NHS24 on 111 before attending A&E.
“As a result of current demand at A&E, people are facing long wait times and our staff are under severe pressure.
“There are other services geared up and ready to see and treat you. If you’ve had a slip, trip or fall, we have numerous Minor Injuries Units (MIUs) across NHSGGC which can look after you, including if you’ve broken a limb. More information on MIUs, what they can treat and how to access one can be found on the NHSGGC website (https://www.nhsggc.org.uk/your-health/know-who-to-turn-to/minor-injury-units/archive/minor-injuries-adults/)
“GP practices across Greater Glasgow and Clyde are operating normal hours, and community pharmacies are also open to help you get the treatment you need.
“Unless very urgent or life-threatening, please do not attend our A&Es unless you are referred.”
Across NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde there are three standalone Minor Injuries Units (MIUs) – at the Vale of Leven Hospital, Stobhill Hospital and the New Victoria ACH. MIUs operate in a similar manner to A&Es and can take care of a vast range of injuries. Patients who attend MIUs following a call to NHS24 are far more likely to be seen, treated and discharged quicker than if they present to an A&E. They will also be helping to protect vital frontline A&E services for those people whose lives are at risk.
More information on MIUs, what they can treat and how to access one can be found on the NHSGGC website: https://www.nhsggc.org.uk/your-health/know-who-to-turn-to/minor-injury-units/archive/minor-injuries-adults/