We know that finding the right place to go when people become ill or injured can be confusing. To help us plan and undertake a communication campaign, we worked with NHS partners to gain a greater understanding of who and why people were accessing EDs and their knowledge of alternative urgent care services. Having this insight available helps determine the approach needed with targeted media and promotion campaigns aimed at helping the public access the most appropriate service for their needs whilst also helping NHS services from being overwhelmed.
People were encouraged to fill in an online survey from 22 July 2020 to 25 August 2020. In addition, 3,000 hard copies were available for people to complete in the waiting areas at five A&E/ED departments throughout Humber Coast and Vale area enabling people to complete them whilst they were waiting for assessment and treatment. Posters were also displayed encouraging people to scan a QR code that took them directly to the survey online. We received 2008 responses and would like to thank everyone for taking part.
Almost three quarters, 74.4% of all respondents said that they have seen information about when it’s appropriate to visit A&E/ED.
In total, there are around 25% of respondents who attended A&E/ED with conditions/injuries that could have been treated at one of the other services available to them.
28.4% of all respondents said that they visited A&E/ED after speaking to NHS 111 over the telephone with 21.3% saying no one told them to attend A&E/ED, they decided themselves that they needed to visit. A large majority of respondents said: “I was advised by a healthcare professional to visit A&E/ED”.
The two services with the highest response rate where respondents selected “not heard of or used” were Urgent Treatment Centres and Out of hours GP services.
The results from the engagement and feedback report will aide decisions of promotion and marketing campaigns aimed at helping service users make sound decisions about where and how they access care. These will include:
- Educational, ‘Choose well’ messages to continue to be promoted to the wider population.
- Promote ‘Think 111 First’ messages as the default for service users to call NHS 111 to be directed to the most appropriate urgent care service for their condition.
More information to help people choose the right service for them is available here.