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Pump message to cut pressure on A&E

PUBLISHED: 11:17 09 April 2009 | UPDATED: 13:38 03 July 2010

PETROL pumps in Norfolk are being used in a campaign asking people whether they really need to go to A&E.

The advertising campaign from NHS Norfolk is supposed to reduce pressure on A&E departments, which have been seeing large numbers of people who could have been treated elsewhere.

PETROL pumps in Norfolk are being used in a campaign asking people whether they really need to go to A&E.

The advertising campaign from NHS Norfolk is supposed to reduce pressure on A&E departments, which have been seeing large numbers of people who could have been treated elsewhere.

Temporary covers have been put on 368 petrol nozzles at 23 petrol stations across Norfolk. They say: “A&E: Do you really need to go there”, although they do not include information on alternatives, other than the address of the NHS Norfolk website.

The pump adverts also say: “A recent survey showed that around 70pc of patients who attend hospital A&E departments could have used a different NHS service.”

Bryan Heap, NHS Norfolk's medical director, said: “This is not to discourage people going to A&E who really need emergency care, but we are asking people to think about the alternatives before they go. People should only be using the 999 ambulance service and hospital A&E departments in a genuine emergency. These are services for people who are seriously ill and in need of emergency care, they are not for minor injuries or general health problems.

The walk-in centre in Thorpe St Andrew can treat minor injuries and illnesses, while GPs can give medical advice and prescriptions. NHS Direct can answer health questions and help find local health services, 24 hours a day, on 0845 46 47.


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