Who you gonna call? IC24

Who you gonna call? IC24

17th August 2021

Providing 24-hour support every day of the year is a vital part of our NHS, and a team of 120 people working shifts with Integrated Care 24 (IC24) at Masterlord Office Village has been a lifeline for patients during the pandemic.

Right through lockdown, with many working from home, the not-for-profit social enterprise offered access to urgent health and social care through the NHS 111 phone service, covering mid and south Essex from their Ipswich contact centre.

IC24 has been at the forefront of urgent care for over 25 years. But the pandemic tested the resourcefulness and resilience of the staff based in Ipswich, showing empathy and reassurance with every patient amid higher than normal call volumes.

Reducing pressure on hospital and GP surgeries for non life-threatening conditions, IC24 has health advisors as a first point of contact. They use triage software, NHS Pathways, to identify the right course of action for a patient, whether that is a referral to a senior clinical advisor or mental health services, an ambulance response for hospital care, a prescription or advice on self-care.

‘Masterlord Office Village is a real business community and in a perfect location for us, with easy access to the A14 and all the facilities we need.  With a 24/7 operation, we have to be agile in responding to demand.’

Abbie Snelling, Head of Estates and Facilities, IC24

An estimated 50% of ambulance call outs are unnecessary, and many people are sent home from A&E having only needed advice. IC24 relieves some of the pressure on the emergency care sector by assessing and helping patients and giving them appropriate care.

But it’s not only about patient care, as the IC24 team at Masterlord Office Village also raised £3,300 for East Anglia’s Children Hospice this year. EACH supports families with children across Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk who have life-threatening health conditions.

For Danielle Quigley, the rewards of having a positive impact on a patient or colleague are an important part of her job at IC24, with no two days the same.  She gained a first class honours degree in criminology and youth studies and worked with young offenders before joining IC24 in 2017 as a health advisor. A keen traveller and runner, she’s now a service delivery manager at the Ipswich contact centre. 

‘Like everyone else in the healthcare arena, my role did change at the beginning of the virus, as there were so many ‘what ifs’. This was the first global pandemic my generation had witnessed. Not knowing what to expect and ensuring that everyone felt safe was obviously difficult. Now, it’s exciting to take part in ongoing learning, developing new skills.’

Danielle Quigley, IC24 Service Delivery Manager for Mid & South Essex


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