Monday 7th April 2014 – 12.45pm – Chris Kowalik in conjunction with South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group.
A scheme to support paramedics when they respond to 999 calls and reduce the number of patients being admitted to hospital, received praise at a national conference last month (Wednesday 26th March).
The GPs with Ambulance scheme is run in partnership between the three Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and West Midlands Ambulance service (WMAS), commissioning GPs to work alongside paramedics when called out, if it’s felt a patient would be better cared for by a GP rather than in hospital.
By employing GPs to work with paramedics, it has helped to free up ambulance crews to attend life-threatening emergencies and eased pressure on our emergency departments and local hospital beds. It has also helped to provide a better service for patients as GPs and ambulance services work more closely to provide care to patients closer to home.
Since the launch of the scheme in October 2012, more than 2,900 emergency calls have been dealt with by GPs, preventing over 2,300 A&E attendances by ensuring care is accessed quickly. It’s estimated that the scheme so far has made over £2.5 million in savings for the NHS.
The scheme was presented at ‘The role of Ambulance and Paramedic Services in Delivering Urgent Care’ conference in Manchester and received very positive feedback from the attendees.
Dr Nikki Burger, Urgent Care Clinical Lead for NHS South Worcestershire CCG made the presentation with Michelle Brotherton, General Manager for WMAS NHS Foundation Trust and said: “This scheme has gone from strength to strength since its launch. The pressures on emergency services are being felt all over the country and we have been really proud of the results that have been achieved in reducing numbers attending A&E.
“This conference has been a great opportunity to showcase the scheme to a national audience and we’ve had a great response to it.”
Above: Michelle Brotherton
Michelle Brotherton, General Manager at West Midlands Ambulance Service added: “The use of GPs in this way has been the right thing to do for patients, not all of whom need to go to A&E. The duty GPs also provide sound clinical advice to ambulance staff which, in turn, increases their confidence when seeking appropriate alternative places for treatments. This scheme has been popular with our own staff and we have been asked by other ambulance services to present our findings.”
Notes for Editors
For more information about NHS South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning please visit: www.southworcsccg.nhs.uk
For further information please contact:
Gary Hammersley, Communications Officer on 01905 681978 / 07776 992015 or email Gary.Hammersley@worcestershire.nhs.uk
Hardeep Cheema, Communications Manager on 07423 524211 or email Hardeep.Cheema@worcestershire.nhs.uk