Is A&E for my mini me? – A&E is for emergencies only
The parents and carers of children under 5 are being encouraged to only use A&E for emergencies this winter. Bedfordshire and Luton Clinical Commissioning Groups have launched ‘Is A&E for my mini me?’.
This campaign comes as hospitals in the area start to gear up for the winter period, the busiest of seasons. Last year saw patients waiting for more than four hours in hospital waiting rooms.
‘Is A&E for my mini me?’ gives advice to help people make the right choice when their child requires medical attention.
Dr Alvin Low, a GP from Biggleswade and Clinical Chair of Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group said:
“One of the most worrying times for a parent or carer is when their little one is ill and their GP practice is closed.
“It is understandable that they may want to take their child to their local hospital’s A&E department.”
Waiting for hours in a hospital waiting room is not always the best environment for a poorly child.
“I would always recommend trying NHS111 first; we have worked hard with providers of NHS111 and Out Of Hours care who have highly skilled call handlers and a range of clinicians who can provide help and advice.”
Register with your GP
Families should ensure that they are all registered with their local GP practise. Then they can access medical advice when it is needed.
Dr Chirag Bakhai, Clinical Director for Planned Care at Luton Clinical Commissioning Group, said:
“Most children can be safely seen at their local GP practice or by the out of hours service, accessed through NHS111.”
“The ‘Mini Me’ campaign is a fun way for us to engage with parents and carers in our area, so that we can signpost people to the best care for them, reduce pressure on our emergency departments and provide advice on how to manage seasonal childhood illnesses at home.”
The ‘Is A&E for my mini me’ campaign is running on social media and in schools and children’s centres across the area.
Local people can share their photographs of themselves with their ‘mini me’s’ to help people make the best choices this winter.