NHS North East Essex was experiencing unprecedented use of it’s A&E services and wanted to re-direct people to its Minor Injuries Unit and Walk In Centre when appropriate.

Following visitor analysis to identify the groups most likely to visit A&E when they could go elsewhere,  we launched a public information campaign – Choose the right route. Initial research showed that people (in particular, those with young children and older people), were confused about where they could go for what, and that signage to the different services was unclear.

Our public information campaign focussed clearly on the symptoms each centre could treat. A website was developed and materials to reach the public, health and social care professionals produced. Features were placed in the local media and leaflets door dropped to postcode areas most frequently attending A&E. The Choose the right route campaign led to a 29% increase in use of the Walk in Centre and a 14% increase in use of the Minor Injuries Unit.

Choose the right route – reducing inappropriate use of A&E in Essex
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