The report indicates that much more work needs to be done to ensure that health services are working together to make sure people have good access to alternatives to A&E, if their condition is not an emergency, and that the public know how to access those alternatives.
The survey shows that a majority of people are trying to use alternatives to A&E, but that access to alternatives is difficult.
Two thirds of the people we spoke to (66%) had tried to get advice and help from elsewhere before coming to A&E and half (50%) had been directed to A&E by those services (GP practice, 111, out of hours). 1 in 5 (20%) attended A&E at NGH because they were unable to see a GP. Only two people mentioned trying to access a pharmacist indicating that more work needs to be done to encourage people to think “pharmacy first”.