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12 July 2018
Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (BCCG) has launched a formal public consultation on its plans to close Putnoe Walk-in Centre and move walk-in services to a new Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) based at Bedford Hospital which will provide medical tests and longer opening.
The CCG has been mandated by NHS England, to open an Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) in Bedfordshire which will have the added benefit of access to diagnostic services such as x-ray and medical tests.
The UTC will be open from 1 October 2018, 12 hours a day, seven days a week with bookable appointments offered via the free NHS111 phone service which is available to call 24 hours a day
The new UTC is part of a wider plan to improve urgent care services for Bedfordshire residents and relieve pressures on A&E, which will be further supported by offering extended opening hours at GP surgeries from September.
The CCG extended the contract for Putnoe Walk-in Centre to the end of September 2018 so that like for like services could be provided while it engages with residents on the future of urgent care in Bedfordshire.
More recently the CCG agreed an additional extension with Putnoe Medical Centre to continue walk-in services from 1 October 2018 until 24 May 2019. The hours will be Monday to Friday 8:00am - 2:00pm and Saturday and Sunday 8:00am - 5:00pm. However, as this is not a like for like solution, an extensive short consultation is taking place before the changes occur, to speak to those patients who will be most affected by the change and to explore how they might be supported.
Sarah Thompson, Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group’s Accountable Officer said: “National guidance shows that patients access the best care when they can be seen by a clinician who has access to simple tests, and Bedford Hospital South Wing has been identified as the best site for the new UTC which will be staffed by hospital clinicians.
“We are aware of the concerns that some local residents have about the change and we would like to hear from as many people as possible about what they think of our plans.
“Over the next few weeks we will be talking to many local groups and organisations, particularly in the Putnoe area so that we can hear from the people who will be most affected by the changes.”
The consultation which opened on 10 July will run until midnight on Sunday 19 August 2018.
Local residents are invited to take part in the consultation by completing a questionnaire, available along with more information, on the CCG website: https://www.bedfordshireccg.nhs.uk/putnoewic
Information will also be available from GP surgeries and places such as libraries, or request a copy of the consultation document and questionnaire from: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information contact 01525 624440 or email@example.com
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