Dial 999 and don’t go to hospital

A specialist 999 service to deal with calls that are not
immediately life-threatening is being piloted by Kent social
services this month.

The 24-hour unscheduled care desk, set up in partnership with Kent
ambulance and local primary care trusts, aims to reduce unnecessary
hospital admissions of older people by providing alternative care
in the community.

Suitable 999 calls will be diverted to the desk, where paramedics
will arrange, with the caller’s permission, for admission to
community hospitals and rehabilitation or respite care homes. Also
on offer are care at home by paramedics, rapid response teams of
domiciliary carers and therapists, and night nurse and social care
sitting services.

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