The challenge of safely reducing avoidable conveyance
An avoidable conveyance happens when a patient has to be conveyed to a hospital emergency department unnecessarily. Ideally their health and social care needs would be more effectively and safely met in a community setting, within or close to their own home, however those alternative pathways are not always in place.
The NHS’s Long Term Plan places ambulance services at the heart of the urgent and emergency care system and commits to implementing Lord Carter’s recommendations, putting in place timely responses so people can be treated by skilled paramedics at home, or in the most appropriate setting outside hospital whenever it is safe to do so.
Safe reduction in avoidable conveyance is a system-wide responsibility and challenge; it cannot be achieved by ambulance services working in isolation. As such, NHS England and NHS Improvement have produced the Planning to Safely Reduce Avoidable Conveyance document, in support of local system plans to safely and sustainably reduce avoidable ambulance service conveyance to emergency departments in England, by the year 2023.
A repository of best practice for safely reducing ambulance conveyance to emergency departments
The NHS England and NHS Improvement Safely Reducing Avoidable Conveyance Programme aims to support STPs and ICSs by sharing models of response and alternative care pathways that can safely reduce the number of patients being taken to emergency departments unnecessarily.
In line with the NHS Long Term Plan providers are working together to ensure patients get more options, better support, and properly joined-up care, at the right time in the optimal care setting.
Examples of where such initiatives have been introduced and are already working well are being monitored, evaluated and shared through this programme, and are available here.
This repository also includes innovative solutions introduced at pace during the response to the COVID-19 pandemic to support clinical decision making in a pressured environment, ensuring patients receive the most appropriate care and reduce pressure on emergency hospital services.