Taranaki DHB launches winter ED campaign

13 July 2017

With winter illnesses and sports injuries adding to the workload at Taranaki DHB’s Emergency Department (ED), an awareness campaign called ‘Should you be at ED?’ has been launched to help educate the Taranaki community about what is considered an urgent and non-urgent health issue.

Sharon Crowe, Taranaki DHB’s Clinical Nurse Manager for ED, said “The campaign is a reminder that the hospital ED is for serious and life-threatening illness or injury. We want people to stop and think – should I be at ED this winter? There are other options for non-urgent health concerns.”

The campaign features people with common health issues that regularly turn up at ED.

Mrs Crowe explains “We have used a mother with her young child who has earache, a rugby player with an ankle injury, a young professional female who has a head cold and an elderly gentleman who has chest pain.”

“The man with the chest pain is the person who should be at ED. But the other ailments can be treated by other health services. ED is for issues like chest pain, serious accidents and trauma. It is very important that people experiencing a genuine emergency call 111 for an ambulance or go directly to ED.”

“For symptoms like ear ache, coughs and colds you can call Healthline (0800 611 116), visit a pharmacy or see your GP. For injuries like sprained ankles and suspected broken bones you can visit MediCross or Phoenix who offer x-ray services, treat broken bones and other sports injuries,” said Mrs Crowe.

Taranaki DHB has used a number of different strategies to promote the campaign, including radio ads, a moving billboard on the back of a bus and cinema advertising.

Mrs Crowe adds, “We hope our campaign better directs the Taranaki community to the correct service to help them with their health issues, whether they are urgent or non-urgent. Our main message is to save ED for emergencies.”

“People can avoid ED this winter by staying well. Get vaccinated for influenza, renew prescriptions on time, stay warm, eat healthy, keep active, avoid germs by washing your hands regularly and play safe to prevent sports injuries.”

Last updated: Thursday, July 13, 2017

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