The Urgent Care (walk in)
Centre, currently based at Doctor Piper House, King Street in
Darlington town centre is moving to Darlington Memorial Hospital on
Wednesday 14th December 2016 and will be located
alongside the Emergency Department.
The urgent care centre will be
open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and patients are urged to
call NHS 111 if they have urgent care needs.
NHS 111 is a service for when
you urgently need medical help, but it is not a life-threatening
situation, and can signpost you to the right local NHS service. If
your GP practice is closed and you need urgent healthcare, just
call 111. For emergencies, major accidents or life-threatening
situations, 999 is the number to call.
Andrea Jones, Chair, NHS
Darlington Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said, 'The
co-location of the urgent care centre at Darlington Memorial
Hospital is part of the CCGs vison for an integrated urgent care
Urgent care services are there
to deal with problems requiring prompt medical attention but are
not life threatening.
Moving the Urgent Care Centre to
Darlington Memorial Hospital offering a 24 service has a number of
benefits. It allows staff to assess patients and decide whether
they need to be seen by urgent care or in A&E. Urgent care
staff can arrange blood tests, X-rays and scans if necessary and
seek specialist opinion.
A&Es are designed to deal
with trauma, accidents and life threatening emergency but often
treat patients who should be seen by their GP practice or by
urgent care or pharmacy.
Rather than discourage people
seeking medical help who turn up at A&E, we intend to increase
the availability of routine services, so that patients receive the
right care at the right time in the right place.
'For some time there has been a
desire to move the service to Darlington Memorial Hospital,
particularly due to the success of the out of hours service being
moved. Currently some patients will attend the A & E
department in hours and once assessed they are referred to the
Urgent Care Centre at Dr Piper House and vice versa. This
means that the patient is assessed twice and there is a delay as
the patient travels between the two sites.
A centralised service is easier
for patients as they know the service is available 24/7 from the
same site. In addition the CCG and Trust are confident that
the move will result in an improved patient experience by
streamlining the patient journey.'
Carole Langrick, executive
director of operations at County Durham & Darlington NHS
Foundation Trust, said, "Co-locating two already successful
services and having a single point of access to those services,
means that, depending on their symptoms, our patients will be seen
by the best person to care for them, whatever the time of day or
night. As health partners, we've been working on this for
some time and are pleased it will be in place ahead of the coldest
winter months which are always particularly busy."
'As I was very, very nervous, I must have been the worst patient
ever and they were brilliant with me and I can't thank them enough
- could you please pass on my sincere thanks.'
Patient, Hysteroscopy Unit, Chester-le-Street Community