Harriett Baldwin welcomes extra funding for Worcestershire A&E and the social care system in the county and seeks clarification on advice for people needing A&E services.
I thank the Secretary of State for the extra £2.5 million for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust and the extra money for the social care system in Worcestershire. Can I clarify what the advice is these days for people who would normally have fetched up at A&E? Is it to call 111 in every instance?
Yes. We are moving to a system where the advice is to call 111 First and then go to A&E, or call 999 if it is an emergency and you need an ambulance. That system will not only help people to be triaged for the right treatment, which may be to see a GP, go to an urgent treatment centre or go to A&E. It will also help the emergency department to know that people are coming. The combination of the two is critical. We are rolling this out over the next couple of months, and we aim to have it in place across the country by 1 December.