Bromley doctors are urging residents to only use urgent treatment and emergency services when they have a serious health emergency or have been asked to attend by NHS 111.
Emergency departments continue to face unprecedented pressures and many people use them for minor ailments or for ongoing health issues.
Dr Claire Gray, Consultant in Emergency Medicine, Princess Royal University Hospital said, “Clinical staff working in emergency and urgent care services need to be free to treat people quickly with serious emergencies such as heart attacks, stroke, major injuries, child health emergencies and broken bones etc. This is what they are trained to do. Having a busy department full of people with non-urgent conditions takes time away from treating those with more serious problems”.
“There are clinicians working in primary care services in the community including GPs, pharmacists, community nurses, physiotherapists, dentists and opticians who have the appropriate skills and treatment options available to help those non-urgent or ongoing medical conditions. Emergency and urgent services are seeing more and more people with minor conditions, which makes it much harder for us to quickly treat those who really need hospital care. If people are not sure about the best place to go when they feel ill, visit www.111.nhs.uk online first for advice”.
Dr Lucia Anthonypillai, Bromley GP and Clinical Lead for Urgent and Emergency care in the borough said, “We are urging our residents to always consider if going to A&E or an urgent treatment centre is the best option for them. Many times, it is better to see your pharmacist or GP services. If you use emergency services for minor conditions, you will be redirected to another service. Please help your NHS by using the right service and keep urgent and emergency services for those who really need them.
“When you feel ill, please think self-care, pharmacy, GP or NHS 111 first. GP practices in Bromley are open five days a week with additional appointments available in the evening and on Saturdays”