NHS Blackpool acquires Toshiba Aplio XG for new GP Led Health Centre

Posted on November 30, 2009. Filed under: GP-led health centres, Press/News Releases, Providers |

Toshiba Medical Systems UK | News & Press |  NHS Blackpool | 30 November 2009

The 100th fully operational new GP led health centre in England was officially opened in Blackpool on the 19th November by Health Secretary Andy Burnham.

In the picture: Left to right – Stewart Whitley, Radiology Advisor, UK Radiology Advisory Services Ltd, Nicky West, Superintendent Sonographer, Blackpool Victoria Hospital, Sue Corless, Sonographer and Nicky Sims, Clinical Applications Specialist Toshiba Medical Systems

NHS Blackpool’s £20m state-of-the art innovative Whitegate Health Centre houses the latest of the 152 GP led health centres opening across England that will see patients from 8am to 8pm, seven days a week, as part of a government programme to increase access to family doctor services and includes a modern Imaging suite comprising a digital X-ray room, MRI and ultrasound.

Health Secretary Andy Burnham said:

“I want the best to be available to everyone, not according to where they live. Our GP services were recently independently rated as being amongst the best in the world by GPs themselves – great news for patients. But I want to go even further and give patients more choice and greater access.

“Nearly one year on from the first GP led health centre opening, 100 centres across the country are making a huge difference in improving access to healthcare for local people.

“These health centres are an addition to existing GP services and are proving popular with patients who have told us that they want to be able to see a GP at times convenient to them and to access a wide range of services previously only available at hospitals.

“In addition, over 75 percent of GP practices are already offering more flexible opening hours for patients and earlier this year I also announced that we will abolish GP practice boundaries within a year, giving patients even greater choice.”

The GP health centres are part of £250 million extra investment in primary care announced last year which also includes setting up 112 new GP practices in areas of the country with the greatest health challenges and the fewest GPs. In each area, the local NHS has chosen the provider best able to deliver responsive services to meet the needs of the local community. Over half of the contracts have been awarded to existing GP partnerships or to GP partnerships in consortium with other providers.

The Whitegate Health Centre is a landmark primary care centre offering a wide range of health services all under one roof, providing patients with greater choice with facilities normally found at a hospital. As well as delivering greatly improved healthcare services within the local community, Whitegate Health Centre has a specific focus on meeting the needs of Blackpool’s homeless population.

The ultrasound room is equipped with a Toshiba Aplio XG and staffed by sonographers from the local Acute Trust – Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre Hospitals NHS Foundation.

Patients scanned at the centre are referred from local Blackpool GP surgeries and are seen within relatively short times from the time of their referral and reported immediately.

The Aplio XG is Toshiba’s premium ultrasound system with a host of features that make it an ideal solution for satisfying robust imaging requirements, as well as boosting efficiency. Its comprehensive array of clinically validated technologies, coupled with its full range of high-performance imaging functions allows the user to visualise minute tissue details and vascular structures with precision for a fast and more accurate diagnosis.

Images acquired at the Whitegate Health Centre are stored on a server locally within the centre and immediately copied to long-term storage and web servers within the Acute Trust. This makes them available for viewing at any of the six sites supported by the Acute Trust, where they can be accessed via 26 diagnostic workstations or any of the 4,500 networked PCs located within the Trust and NHS Blackpool.

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