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Choosing the right health care service

In a genuine health emergency call 999. But if it’s not an emergency or you’re not sure, there may be another option which is more convenient for you.

  • Calling 111. Advisors can help you make a decision about whether or not you need to go to A&E. If you don’t, they can help you find the service that’s right for you – whether that’s visiting your GP, going to a walk-in centre or minor injuries unit (read more), or advice on how to manage your symptoms at home.
  • Calling or visiting your GP. Some now have extended opening times – check with your local practice or with NHS111 for details.
  • Speaking to a community pharmacist. They’re trained professionals, you don’t need an appointment and they often have private consulting rooms.

If you do need to go to A&E …

In order to give the best treatment and support, A&E staff need to know about the services and medication that people already use. This is especially true for people who tend to use A&E more often, such as frail older people, homeless people and those with alcohol or drug dependencies. A new, confidential computer record, the Leeds Care Record, will include a range of health and social care information, such as your medications, test results and referrals, to help improve the care you receive.

What will I notice?

  • There will soon be more information about how to find the right service for you.
  • At A&E, support should be better coordinated because professionals will have more information about the person’s medical background and care needs.
  • If someone is frail and elderly they will receive more intensive support that links in better with the services they already use.
  • If someone is homeless or has a drug or alcohol dependency, A&E staff will work more closely with other services to ensure they will receive all the wider support they need both during and after the health crisis.

Are you interested in helping to shape how these services will work in the future? Please get in touch.