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An alternative model of pre-hospital care for 999 patients who require non-emergency medical assistance

Joanna M. Blodgett (University College London, London, UK)
Duncan Robertson (North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust, Bolton, UK)
David Ratcliffe (North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust, Bolton, UK)
Kenneth Rockwood (Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada)

International Journal of Emergency Services

ISSN: 2047-0894

Article publication date: 7 August 2017

Abstract

Purpose

With the increasing demand on ambulance services, paramedics are tasked to arrange as much out of hospital care as possible, to develop integrated systems of care and work with hundreds of different providers – all in the 15 minutes allocated for assessment. A UK ambulance trust is navigating and leading much of this work as one of the first trusts to implement a general practitioner referral policy as an alternate to direct conveyance. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

Here the authors discuss the referral scheme, examine the limited evidence available and discuss what is needed to influence prospective success of implementing this scheme in other trusts.

Findings

Limited evidence for these schemes are described, however there is a clear gap in critical appraisal and methodologically rigorous evidence needed to implement these schemes in other ambulance schemes.

Originality/value

In order to facilitate collaboration of healthcare services and to minimize the burden of increasing numbers of patients, communication and discussion of alternate routes of care is crucial. This viewpoint piece is one of the first to emphasize the potential benefits of such schemes.

Keywords

Citation

Blodgett, J.M., Robertson, D., Ratcliffe, D. and Rockwood, K. (2017), "An alternative model of pre-hospital care for 999 patients who require non-emergency medical assistance", International Journal of Emergency Services, Vol. 6 No. 2, pp. 99-103. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJES-01-2017-0002

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited