Dr Georgina Robertson, Clinical lead for Emergency Medicine for the Department explains more: “The streaming tool will help us to ensure that everyone receives the treatment they need without lengthy waits in the department.
“Upon arrival at the Urgent Treatment Centre, patients are asked to input some details into the tool via a smart device. The tool will guide the patient through a series of questions in order to assess and prioritise their condition.
“Once the information is gathered, we will be able to determine whether a patient needs to be seen immediately or if they can be asked to return at a later, appointed time. This will reduce crowding in the waiting areas making it much safer for patients and colleagues, especially in light of the new Omicron variant of the Covid-19 virus.
“We are already seeing the benefits to our patients as in the first week of implementation alone we saw 682 complete the tool and out of these, 630 were given an allotted appointment time.
“Alongside this, the average time to triage each patient was 15.5 minutes, with time waiting to see a clinician averaging at 46 minutes. Our performance against the National 4-Hour Standard met the target at 95% for that first week. This is a really positive step forward in urgent and emergency care.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to remind people that this is not an alternative to GP or other primary care services and urge everyone to use their health services appropriately. Once the tool in in full use, we will be hoping to redirect patients attending to the most appropriate service so checking with NHS 111 online first could save you a wasted journey.
“Our Urgent Treatment Centre at Burnley General Teaching Hospital is for conditions suitable for an urgent assessment or urgent appointment, such as Minor head injuries:
Cuts and scrapes
It is not for life-threatening conditions people should still use the A&E service based at Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital for critical or life-threatening situations requiring urgent medical attention, such as loss of consciousness, heavy blood loss, broken bones, persistent chest pain, difficulty breathing, overdoses, ingestion or poisoning.”