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County NHS launches smartphone app
A NEW mobile phone app has been launched by NHS Worcestershire as part of a campaign to encourage members of the public to consider the options they have before attending A&E.
The free app, which is the first of its kind in the county, has been designed by the area's NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) - including Wyre Forest's.
It provides an instant information about the range of options that are available for anyone who is injured or unwell and includes a GPS (global positioning system) function to allow users to find their nearest healthcare services, wherever they are in the county, from pharmacies, minor injury units, GPs, emergency dental care and sexual health services.
Ruth Davoll, urgent care lead for the county's three CCGs, said: "The app offers people a simple way of accessing information about local NHS health services on the go. We hope it will make a real difference by signposting people to the most appropriate health service if they are injured or unwell."
Chairman of Healthwatch Worcestershire, Peter Pinfield, said: "The app is a real practical and informative way of finding out lots of useful information."
The app has been produced as part of the "Is A*E for me?" initiative which aims to reduce pressures on busy emergency services over the winter period by raising awareness about alternatives to A&E.
Lisa Spencer, Worcestershire A&E department manager, said: "Emergency departments all over the country are going to be under pressure this winter and you can help us by making sure you always use the right service.
"The phone app is a great way of targeting a different audience, it's a new tool for us to use to get the message across and remind people of the alternatives to visiting A&E."
The app can be downloaded on iOS devices in Apple's App Store and on Android phones in the Google Play store.
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