NHS plea to North East to only use A&E for life threatening emergencies due to strike action
People across the North East are being reminded to use 999 or A&E for life-threatening emergencies only as further industrial action impacts on NHS services taking place from 7am Monday 2 October until 7am Thursday 5 October.
The latest industrial action will comprise of a 72 hour walk-out by British Medical Association (BMA) member consultants and junior doctors, and British Dental Association (BDA) member consultants and hospital dental trainees. Also included in this strike is a 24hr strike by Society of Radiography (SoR) members, who will walk-out from 7am Tuesday 3 October until 7am Wednesday 4 October.Health leaders in the region continue to urge the public to only call 999 for an ambulance or attend A&E for life-threatening conditions or injuries only and that patients will experience disruption and long waits during the strike, and in the immediate days following the action when patient attendance often peaks.
Read South Tyneside's news on the go with our free email newsletters - bringing the headlines to your inbox. Catch up on the day's news and sport and enjoy even more from your Gazette. Visit our website here to find out more and sign up.Dr Neil O’Brien, executive medical director, North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board said: "NHS trusts across the region reported exceptionally high attendances of patients using urgent and emergency services during recent industrial action, with patients experienced long delays in being seen as staff had to prioritise those most urgent.”“Whilst the NHS across the region does its utmost to plan for these strikes, and we understand the impact of these on patients, families and staff during that time, we also know there is a longer term impact of appointments needing to be rearranged and what longer waiting times mean to people.”“Teams are working hard to give people the care they need and really do need and appreciate the public's help to take extra care and only call 999 for an ambulance or attend A&E for life-threatening conditions or injuries only.”
Patients with hospital treatments and appointments that need to be rescheduled will be contacted directly to inform them of any changes and should assume their scheduled appointment or treatment will go ahead unless they have heard otherwise. There is no need to contact the NHS.
GP practices and local pharmacies will also be open as usual during the industrial action to help with advice and treatments.
Public are reminded for urgent health needs, which are not life-threatening, NHS 111 online is available 24 hours a day.
A symptom checker can be used to assess symptoms and it will re-direct to a health professional if people need to be seen by someone, you can also call NHS111. Self-care advice is also available on-line from the NHS.Parents, carers and young people can also use the Healthier Together app or website which provides NHS healthcare advice and top tips on a range of child related illnesses along with information on local services.Anyone needing urgent mental health support should continue to seek it via their local Crisis Team.