People in Northamptonshire can now access real-time information about waiting times at the county’s NHS urgent care facilities – thanks to the launch of a new smartphone app.
The app, called WaitLess, enables those in need of urgent but non-life-threatening care to quickly see how long the wait is at both Kettering and Northampton General Hospitals and Corby Urgent Care Centre.
It will even factor in journey times using live traffic and travel information to help them choose the most appropriate treatment location for their condition or injury.
Developed by Transforming Systems, WaitLess aims to reduce the pressure on the county’s urgent and emergency care services by spreading demand and helping patients to make an informed choice about where to go for treatment.
Simon Weldon, chief executive at Kettering General Hospital and urgent and emergency care lead for Northamptonshire Health and Care Partnership, said: “When people need urgent treatment for an injury or medical condition they often head straight to their nearest hospital – but with demand and waiting times constantly changing, the closest location isn’t always the best. WaitLess allows people to quickly view the local urgent care and minor injury facilities where they can go for treatment and how long they are likely to wait to be seen there.
“Not only does this enable them to choose the most appropriate location for their needs but it also helps to reduce pressure on our busy services. That’s especially important at this time of year when demand for urgent and emergency care is particularly high.”
Kate Holt, CEO of Healthwatch Northamptonshire, said: “Healthwatch is pleased to see the launch of this app, which puts data into the hands of people and helps them to make an informed choice about where to seek care, benefitting them and the county’s health and care system.”
The WaitLess service is designed for people seeking treatment for minor injuries and medical conditions requiring urgent but non-emergency treatment.
For life-threatening emergencies, people should continue to dial 999. Urgent NHS medical advice is also available by calling 111 or online at 111.nhs.uk.