New app helps people get right medical service in Lincolnshire

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A new website and app to help people find the most appropriate health care service in Lincolnshire has just launched.

The ASAPLincs website and app has been built using the very latest attendance data from Lincolnshire’s emergency departments.

The product is designed to allow residents to identify their symptoms or condition from some of the most commonly seen in emergency departments, before displaying the most appropriate treatment service for them. This includes indicating the nearest appropriate location for that service - such as the address of a local pharmacy or minor injuries unit

Health bosses believe the new product will help patients get the best care in the fastest possible time – while reducing pressure on emergency departments through fewer unnecessary attendances.

Ruth Cumbers, programme director for Urgent Care in Lincolnshire, said: “We are very pleased to be able to launch the ASAPLincs website and app and firmly believe it can make a difference to the health care system in the county. Lincolnshire’s emergency departments are under pressure – in part due to a large number of unnecessary attendances. Patients receiving appropriate care from the right provider is important not only for their own health, but to help ease the pressure on emergency departments. We want residents to be aware of alternatives, to trust the alternatives and know when and where they are available – the app and website does all of this in an easily accessible way.

“The app is available at the push of a button – for whatever reason a patient needs it.”

In areas such as Gloucestershire where the app has been developed, emergency department attendances fell by about 14,000 in three months, while use of alternative provisions increased.

Nina Gavin, lead researcher at ICE Creates, who developed the website and app, said: “Via the app, citizens are prompted to check their symptoms and conditions and are shown the most appropriate service options for their needs. ASAP also provides self-care advice, which will help citizens to confidently make the right choice, at the right time, in the right place.”

l Access the website via www.asaplincs.nhs.uk.