This year, Greater Manchester Health and Social Care partnership, together with health and social care partners have come together to tackle the increased pressure that our public services experience in winter.

This year, we are already starting to see the pressures building up in our A&E departments.

  • Pressure on Accident & Emergency departments is now ramping up as the cold weather hits.
  • Devolution first as dedicated control room for Greater Manchester launches to help manage pressure on accident and emergency departments.
  • The people of GM can do their bit to help in winter……

A brand new urgent and emergency care hub has been set up to monitor activity across all the hospitals in Greater Manchester. The hub will enable teams to predict and respond to any pressures building up in A&E departments and will be able to provide early warning and help to health partners.

Greater Manchester hospitals and the region’s ambulance service are working closely together to ensure that the sickest patients get swift access to emergency care in hospitals, with others not needing hospital care often seen by another health professional such as a GP or pharmacist. Using current data and previous activity, the hub will be able to work with local teams to review staffing plans when A&E is busy.

The hub works alongside primary care – the first point of contact for health care for most people – by making sure that patients who do not need hospital accident and emergency care – are able to be seen closer to home in a place that better suits their needs.

Patients in most of Greater Manchester can now access pre-bookable and same day appointments at GP practices in their neighbourhood during evenings and the weekend. GPs and A&E staff in every area will also soon be able to refer patients to local urgent care treatment centres for same day, urgent appointments to help with managing their daily pressures.

 Dr Tracey Vell, local GP and Associate lead for primary care, GMHSC Partnership

“When we put out messages that A & E is particularly busy we really mean it; if people do turn up they can expect a long wait while more serious cases are prioritised.”

“We urge the people of Greater Manchester to use their GP practice as their first port of call when they require urgent medical care (except for 999 emergencies). They can also use 111.”

“In addition, they should have a well-stocked medicine cabinet at home, take all medicines that are prescribed to them, visit their local pharmacy for advice at the first signs of illness, and all those eligible should get their free flu jab.”

Jon Rouse, Chief Officer of Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership

“When Greater Manchester received its devolved responsibilities we knew that urgent and emergency care was going to be one of our most difficult challenges. The hub is one part of our approach to winter planning which includes work to reduce the number of people catching flu, improving staffing levels and making sure that patients do not spend any longer than they need to in hospitals.”

“Devolution means that we can work more closely with all the organisations involved in delivering health and care to provide a better care experience for the people of Greater Manchester. We also want to reassure the public that people with life-threatening, emergency or serious conditions will always receive the highest priority from the NHS.”