New London Polyclinic

Posted on August 5, 2009. Filed under: Polyclinics, Press/News Releases |

The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy | accessed 5 August 2009

Published 29 April 2009

The first polyclinics in London, proposed in Lord Darzi’s 2007 report ‘A Framework for Action’, open today.

The first seven polyclinics in London are:

  1. NHS Hammersmith & Fulham, Hammersmith Hospital – London’s first hospital-based polyclinic at Hammersmith Hospital brings a new seven-days-a-week GP surgery to the most deprived part of the borough and provides an urgent care centre for people with minor injuries and illnesses.
  2. Harrow PCT, Alexandra Avenue – The health centre will now offer GP services. There will be GPs onsite seven days a week from, 8am to 8pm and walk-in, bookable appointments for both registered and unregistered patients. Ultrasound and phlebotomy services will also be extended.
  3. NHS Hounslow, Heart of Hounslow – The existing health centre will offer GP services seven days a week, hospital outpatient appointments and diagnostics including breast screening. A diagnostic suite is also planned for winter 2009.
  4. Lambeth PCT, Gracefield Gardens – This polyclinic will offer extended GP hours, extended access to pharmacy services, and a wide range of outpatient services including a diabetes one-stop-shop clinic.
  5. NHS Redbridge, Loxford Polyclinic – This is the first purpose-built polyclinic. From mid-June, patients will benefit from the full range of polyclinic services including walk-in access to GPs, long-term conditions management, x-ray facilities and a range of other diagnostics.
  6. Tower Hamlets PCT, The Barkantine – The Barkantine is a well-known centre that has continued to raise its ambition for the benefit of patients. It now also offers a wide range of services including GP services 8am to 8pm every day, and extended pharmacy access and services.
  7. NHS Waltham Forest, Oliver Road – The polyclinic is situated at the Leyton Orient football ground. It will offer extended GP services, a minor injury unit, an onsite pharmacy, and diagnostics including electrocardiogram (ECG). Further diagnostics will be introduced later in the year.

These polyclinics will operate on a networked model comprising a polyclinic centre providing a broad range of services linked to nearby GP practices, thus allowing patients to remain with their current GP and access polyclinic services as needed.

The polyclinics have been developed by the Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) and will offer a broad range of core services, as well as other health services tailored to the specific health needs of the local population. These core services include GP services open 8am – 8pm, 7 days a week, bookable and walk-in appointments for registered and unregistered patients.

What other services do polyclinics have?

Polyclinics have a variety of different healthcare and support services, planned around the people that need to use them. Examples of the services available at polyclinics are:

  • Outpatient care
  • Community nursing
  • Independent living support
  • Physiotherapy
  • Mental health clinics
  • Diagnostics, including ECG and ultrasound
  • Blood tests
  • Sexual health clinic
  • Dental services
  • Pharmacies
  • Management of long-term conditions, including diabetes
  • Housing advice
  • Benefits support

Who can use polyclinics?

Anyone, whether registered with a GP in the area or not. The polyclinic model for community-based healthcare is a key component of the Healthcare for London vision for improving patient care across London. An independent evaluation is planned to commence from September 2009.

Details of the polyclinics

Lambeth PCT

Lambeth PCT formally opened the Gracefield Gardens health and social care centre in Streatham in June 2008. Two local GP practices with an approximate list size of 6,000 moved into the centre in December 2007. From April patients will benefit from additional extended access to GP services including out-of-hours services for registered and unregistered patients, and walk-in and bookable appointments. The polyclinic will offer PCT nursing and therapy services, a Lambeth Council customer centre and council social care and children’s services. As a polyclinic, Gracefield Gardens will offer an extensive range of outpatient clinics (such as gynaecological and renal services) and diagnostic facilities, with plans to further extend the range later in 2009. The polyclinic will also provide an HIV outreach clinic and a refugee health clinic. Eleven GP practices from the Streatham locality will form the network with Gracefield Gardens as the centre and population coverage of approximately 55,000.

Redbridge PCT

Redbridge PCT will have the first purpose-built polyclinic, the Loxford polyclinic, which is situated in the most deprived ward of the borough. Two local GP practices with a combined list size of approximately 12,000 will be moving into the site and there has been a formal consultation with patients regarding this move. Sixty-three per cent of respondents were unequivocally in favour of the proposals to relocate, with a further 18% cautiously in favour. Four local practices will be networked into this centre. Loxford will offer a fully comprehensive range of services, including x-ray, dental services and a wide range of outpatient services. The Loxford polyclinic will have a high focus on health and wellbeing and will offer physiotherapy, yoga and keep fit classes and a number of other voluntary sector support services. Lord Darzi will be attending and officially opening this polyclinic on 29 April. Services will commence in June 2009.

Harrow PCT

Harrow PCT has developed the existing Alexandra Avenue site which is located in the sixth most deprived ward in Harrow. As a polyclinic, it will provide GP access and support unscheduled care with the availability of a walk in service: both walk-in and bookable GP appointments will be available from 8am to 8pm every day. Minor surgery, blood tests, physiotherapy and healthy living classes will also be available. The polyclinic will serve a population of 48,500 people, with six GP practices networked to the centre.

NHS Hounslow

NHS Hounslow has extended the services on offer at the Heart of Hounslow by increasing outpatient and diagnostic provision. There are currently three practices operating from the site with a fourth practice offering extended hours, for walk in and unregistered patients from the end of April. With this additional practice the list size of the centre will rise to 28,000. As a polyclinic, Heart of Hounslow will offer GP services 8am to 8pm every day, physiotherapy, minor surgery, breast screening and ultrasound, with a diagnostic suite including x-ray planned for autumn/winter 2009. A new ‘health zone’ will provide help with quitting smoking, drug and alcohol advice, and weight management. There will be seven local GP practices networked to the Heart of Hounslow.

Waltham Forest PCT

Waltham Forest PCT has developed the existing Oliver Road Health Centre which is situated at the Leyton Orient football ground. As a polyclinic, it will offer a new GP practice offering extended access to GP services and minor injury care, as well as blood tests and cardiology investigations. Other services will include podiatry, health visiting, physiotherapy and long-term conditions management including diabetes and an on-site pharmacy. The PCT is looking to extend the service over the coming 12 months, in particular, providing additional diagnostics.

NHS Hammersmith and Fulham

NHS Hammersmith and Fulham has developed London’s first hospital-based polyclinic at Hammersmith Hospital, which will provide an urgent care centre for people with minor injuries and illnesses. The polyclinic is situated in the most deprived part of the borough of Hammersmith and Fulham and to date has not had the level of NHS services that it should. That will change significantly with the new Hammersmith polyclinic and will be further improved with the development of a polyclinic in White City in 2011. A third polyclinic will be based at Charing Cross Hospital, set to open later in 2009. They will all provide polyclinic services with GPs and other health professionals, such as pharmacists, community nurses and therapists working together to offer a complete health service. They will also have a range of diagnostic services on hand such as x-ray and ultrasound. The Fulham polyclinic will also offer walk-in treatment 24 hours a day.

Tower Hamlets PCT

Tower Hamlets PCT has continued to develop the Barkantine Centre since it opened as a health centre in 2007, demonstrating the long-term ambition to improve services for local people. It offers a comprehensive women and children’s service including a birthing centre, ante- and post-natal classes, baby massage workshops and access to the community paediatric team. It also offers a range of outpatient services including rheumatology, continence clinic and lymphoedema clinics. A range of diagnostics are on offer including 24 hour ECG, ultrasound and endoscopy. The Barkantine also offers a range of healthy living classes as well as an obesity clinic and drug and alcohol awareness services. It also provides an extensive dental service which is a partnership service with the Royal London Teaching Hospital. As a polyclinic, the centre will continue to provide and develop a wide range of services including GP services 8am to 8pm every day, and will extend access to pharmacy services.

Source:Healthcare for London

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