'Only attend A&E for genuine emergency' – Hospital's plea to help reduce pressure

The emergency team at Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital today renewed their plea to local people to help them reduce pressure on A&E in the run up to the Bank Holiday weekend.

Thursday, 27th May 2021, 4:37 pm

The request to consider alternative options for care comes following weeks of significant demand which at its height has resulted in up to 67 people waiting for treatment.

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs the Blackburn A&E Department, said the number of people attending was having an adverse impact on waiting times and affected the team’s ability to see people who needed their help the most.

Medical director Dr Jawad Husain said: “The support we received from local people during the pandemic was overwhelming and we remain incredibly grateful. However, we do now need help to reduce the pressure on A&E.

The number of people attending Blackburn A&E Department is having an adverse impact on waiting times. Photo: Getty
The number of people attending Blackburn A&E Department is having an adverse impact on waiting times. Photo: Getty

“The department is open and the team is ready to care for people who need help. We know that there are patients who absolutely need to be there but we are also seeing people who would be better cared for at an alternate healthcare service or setting.

“Please, only attend A&E if you have a genuine emergency, such as chest pain, stroke, severe infection or severe bleeding that cannot be stopped.

“If you need urgent medical help and don’t know which service is best for you, NHS 111 can help 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They will ask questions about your symptoms so you get the help you need.

“If you need to go to the ED, NHS 111 will book an arrival time for you. This might mean you spend less time in the department and the team can be ready to see you, whilst also caring for other patients who may need them more.”

NHS 111 can be accessed online at 111.nhs.uk or by calling 111, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.