Ipswich: Giant yellow figures point people to right destination for healthcare

The twelve yellow figures are part of NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Groups campaign to raise awareness of the range of local NHS services available to provide advice and support when its not an emergency. The twelve yellow figures are part of NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Groups campaign to raise awareness of the range of local NHS services available to provide advice and support when its not an emergency.

Lauren Everitt Health correspondent lauren.everitt@archant.co.uk
Sunday, April 27, 2014
6:29 PM

Health bosses have launched a campaign to try to stop people visiting A&E unless it is for a serious emergency.

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Twelve 7ft yellow figures were used to bring the message to Ipswich as part of NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group’s (CCG) campaign to raise awareness of other NHS services available.

The figures, which are inspired by the sculpture of Antony Gormley, depicted different types of common ailments including diarrhoea, vomiting and backache.

Dr Mark Shenton, a GP in Stowmarket and chairman of the Ipswich and East Suffolk CCG, said: “Recent figures have estimated that around 40% of people attending A&E didn’t need to be there and could have been better treated elsewhere. The yellow figures highlight the alternative ways that people can treat medical conditions by self-caring, asking advice from their pharmacist, making a GP appointment or by calling NHS 111.

“We want people to be aware that there are quicker alternatives to A&E treatment for non-emergency medical conditions. By choosing the right method of treatment this will also lessen the pressure on A&E staff who are busy saving people’s lives.

“The yellow figures are a great way to raise awareness of the health care options that are available and the friendly campaign staff are there to help you.”

Options for non-emergency treatment include self-care from a well-stocked medicine cabinet at home, pharmacies, NHS 111 and GP surgeries.

Annie Topping, chief executive of health watchdog Healthwatch Suffolk, said: “We know that approximately 18% of people admit to having knowingly used A&E for a non-emergency at some point in their lives.

“Healthwatch Suffolk therefore welcomes any initiative to signpost people to appropriate services. After all, better use of services means that people are receiving the right care in the right places.

“Our work with the clinical commissioning groups to review our local health and social care system means that we can help to deliver plans for future services that support people to be healthy in their own community and reduce reliance on existing services that are intended for other services.”

The yellow figures will also be in The Triangle, Felixstowe, on Wednesday, The Meadow Centre in Stowmarket on May 1 and outside Woodbridge Town Hall on May 2 from 8.30am-4.30pm.

2 comments

  • Based on personal experience on more than one occasion: Phone for an ambulance and you will find you wait for a call back and then the ill person has to crawl to the phone to give details (and may be asked silly questions like "are you breathing?") .... spend valuable time on this and then (if still alive) you MAY be sent a paramedic .... and then possibly they will call an ambulance. People die going through this process so the best thing if you feel ill (and are CERTAIN it is not a minor illness) is to go straight to A&E ... it is the BEST place to be if you turn out to be seriously ill. And if we as a country cannot afford to run the A&E service like this? Well, what about getting the BILLIONS presently wasted on giving so many perks to the wealthy (like higher rate tax relief on pension contributions, no NI on higher earnings)? In fact, WHEN will we have a government that actually spends money on essential services rather than giving it to the already wealthy?

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    Johnthebap

    Sunday, April 27, 2014

  • On the other hand it can be so difficult to get to see (or even speak to) a GP that it is no wonder more people seek assistance at A&E!

    Add your comment | Report this comment

    Seasidemac

    Sunday, April 27, 2014

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