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Emergency departments should provide range of out-of-hours services, conference hears

BMJ 2015; 351 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.h5080 (Published 23 September 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;351:h5080
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. 1London

Emergency departments should make the most of their strong brand and become the home for out-of-hours primary care and community pharmacy, nursing, and mental health teams, a King’s Fund conference in London on 22 September was told.

Clifford Mann, president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, said that emergency departments, universally recognised by the public, should become a hub for a range of services. Then patients attending emergency departments could have immediate access to whatever service was appropriate to their needs.

“People know all about the alternatives but still choose to use A&E [emergency departments],” he said. “The more we say don’t use it, the more it reinforces brand recognition.”

There was now a large mismatch between what …

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