Archive for October, 2010

Walk-In Centre to close – Stockport PCT

Posted on October 27, 2010. Filed under: Closure, GP-led health centres |

Welcome to Stockport PCT.

NHS Stockport’s 8-to-8 Walk-In Centre is to close during GP opening hours to encourage people to see their own doctor and save the health service £800,000.

It will close its doors as a drop in clinic from the end of September but the Out of Hours service, running from 6.30pm until 8am each day and all day at the weekends and bank holidays, will continue.

The centre was set up last October to offer all patients more choice and to provide a drop in clinic for people who don’t have access to a GP, as part of the National Equitable Access to Primary Care scheme.

It was hoped that the centre would also help reduce the number of people turning up at Stepping Hill’s A&E for non emergency treatment.

However the latest figures show that three times as many people as expected are using the Walk-In Centre and almost all are registered with a local GP.

At the same time, the number of people attending A&E has also gone up by around 5% so costs for unscheduled care have risen to an unaffordable level.

NHS Stockport Chief Executive Richard Popplewell said “Most patients use the Walk-In Centre during the day when they could be seen by their own GP, creating a costly duplication of services.

“In these financially challenging times, though we would like to offer this choice to patients, we cannot justify the amount we are spending on this overlap in provision.

“We appreciate that this is a popular service but we hope the people of Stockport understand why we’ve had to make this difficult decision.”

The increased demand on the health service and the unprecedented financial climate has resulted in NHS Stockport needing to find over £20m worth of savings this year alone.

It’s urging people to think about when and where they get treatment if they’re unwell with the NHS Choose Well campaign.

Pharmacists, who are highly trained health professionals, are a great place to get advice for many minor ailments as is the health advice service NHS Direct which can be accessed by phone or via the internet.

If you do need to see a doctor the best choice for you is to see your own GP. They get to know you and your family and with that knowledge can make the best diagnosis for you.

Most practices now offer early morning or late evening surgeries on selected days and over half are open at least one Saturday a month.

If you’re unsure about the extended hours that your doctor offers please check with your practice.


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£1m-a-year Newcastle walk-in clinic likely to close

Posted on October 25, 2010. Filed under: Closure | Tags: |

Journal Live | 25 Oct 2010

A CITY centre walk-in clinic looks set to close after health chiefs decided it is not good value for money.

The centre at the Jury’s Inn Hotel, in Newcastle city centre, opened in August 2006, but it is likely to close at the end of April next year.

The clinic was intended to give people working in the city centre easy access to health services.

But it has been decided the cost of running the no-appointment clinic – more than £1m a year – is too high given the number of people who use it and the type of illnesses and injuries they have.

Health chiefs say there are other centres, hospital clinics and doctors’ surgeries close to the city centre for people to use and that funding would have to be taken from other services if the clinic was to be kept open.

The centre opened after a contract was agreed between the Department of Health and private operator Care UK. A total of 26 people work there.

A spokeswoman for NHS North of Tyne said: “As commissioners of healthcare, we are discussing whether we should continue a walk-in service on that site once the Department of Health contract with Care UK has ended.

“In doing so, we are considering the impact on patients and the funding implications of taking over the running of the service.

“Since Newcastle Central Walk-in Centre opened, many more NHS services have been established for people who live and work in Newcastle making it easier to access urgent primary care health services.”

Doctors and nurses at the walk-in centre deal with issues such as stomach upsets, ear, eye and throat infections, strains, sprains, minor rashes, scalds, cuts, grazes, bites, stings and minor head injuries.

But some GPs criticised the centre, saying money could be spent more effectively on helping patients at their own practice.

The NHS spokeswoman said that since its opening, GPs in the city have extended their opening hours while other centres have been set up to give people easy access to healthcare.

New facilities include the minor injuries unit at the RVI and the Newcastle University Medical Centre, which is moving to a new surgery in Boots in Eldon Square next week.

Care UK operates 14 walk-in centres for the NHS around the country, but Newcastle is its only outlet in the North East. Nobody was available for comment.
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Pulse – Darzi centre closes due to ‘duplication in services’

Posted on October 8, 2010. Filed under: Closure, GP-led health centres |

Pulse – Darzi centre closes due to ‘duplication in services’.

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