The NHS in Sussex is urging those who need urgent medical care that’s not an emergency to “save emergency services for saving lives” over the coming bank holiday long weekend and planned RCN strike action.
All health services in Sussex are experiencing high levels of demand, and there continues to be a steady rise in people attending emergency departments. Bank holidays are traditionally a pressured time for all health services, and the RCN industrial action from 8pm Sunday and end midnight 1 May 2023 will add further challenges.
That’s why anyone who needs urgent medical support, but does not have a life-threatening illness or injury, should contact NHS111 first by dialling 111 or going online to www.111.nhs.uk.
NHS111 is available 24 hours a day and can provide help and support online or over the phone, including connecting callers to pharmacists and out of hours GPs, as well as helping those in need get to the most appropriate service if they do need to see someone face to face.
For those who do need help for urgent care that’s not an emergency, there are alternatives to visiting A&E across Sussex. There are several walk-in and minor injury services and urgent treatment centres available to help with illness and injury which are urgent but not life threatening See the full list of open services.
NHS Sussex Chief Medical Officer, Dr Dinesh Sinha, said: “We need to save emergency services for saving lives – A&E is always for life-threatening emergencies and to provide urgent help for people who may have become seriously ill, for example a stroke or a heart attack, especially during the bank holiday and RCN nurses strike action.
“Health and care organisations in Sussex are working together to maintain patient safety, and emergency and critical care will be prioritised and will continue to be available for those who need it, and we urge the public to help us by using the right service to meet their needs.”