Emergency Department signposting/ redirection guidance

Best practice guidance for Emergency Departments to ensure people are being seen by the right person in the right place for their healthcare need.

3. Approach

A national Unscheduled Care Short Life Working Group, established in February 2021, was led and sponsored by the Scottish Government (SG). The over-arching group was co-chaired by Craig Cunningham, Head of Commissioning and Performance, South Lanarkshire Health and Social Care Partnership and Eddie Fraser, Director, East Ayrshire, Health and Social Care Partnership.

This group engaged clinical and operational leaders across the system to revisit and build on the extant Unscheduled Care National Redirection Guidance.

Membership of the Short Life Working Group is located in Appendix A.

General feedback from Emergency Departments in Scotland suggested they undertake some form of redirection but these are often informal arrangements and there are inconsistencies in application. This variation in approach presents a significant opportunity for improvement to provide consistent signposting and redirection to most appropriate care.

This updated guidance supports a ‘Once for Scotland’ approach. NHS Boards, Health and Social Care Partnerships, (H&SCPs), Primary Care (PC) and the Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) have worked collaboratively with the Scottish Government to review and amalgamate best practice examples from across the country and translate them into implementable guidance.


Email: jessica.milne@gov.scot

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