This is to provide an update on progress with procurement of a new urgent care service in North Tyneside, following last year’s engagement exercise and the earlier public consultation process.

The CCG has now completed a procurement process and Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has been selected to operate the new service from 1 October 2018.

The new service will offer GP-led healthcare 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The new service will be based at North Tyneside General Hospital (Rake Lane), in line with the overall preference expressed by patients during the consultation process.

Patients will be able to book appointments 24/7 as well as having the option to walk in between 8am and midnight.

Urgent care services deal with minor injuries and minor ailments and are separate from A&E, which provides emergency care for life-threatening conditions.

These changes will integrate all urgent care services in one place. The new urgent treatment centre will be open from 8am to midnight every day of the week, with night-time appointments available by calling NHS 111. From 6.30pm to 8am, and 24/7 at weekends, there will also be a GP out of hours service, which will offer advice and help, including home visits.

This means patients will get the right care first time, as well as making better use of NHS resources.

It is one of a number of changes making it easier for patients to get the care they need. During the past year, the CCG has added hundreds of extra GP appointments every week in North Tyneside, including evenings and weekends.

In addition, the NHS 111 service is changing, with more clinicians available within the team and the ability to directly book GP appointments for patients if that is the most appropriate outcome of a call.

The CCG is calling on patients to ‘talk before you walk’ – by calling NHS 111 you can book an appointment, save yourself the hassle and help the NHS work more smoothly too.

The changes reflect the findings from the detailed consultation exercise, in which patients told us that urgent care services are confusing and they want something simple. In addition, following the recent engagement exercise, the CCG agreed to keep the walk-in service open until midnight, rather than 10pm as previously proposed.

These changes will replace the current urgent care centres at Battle Hill and North Tyneside General Hospital (Rake Lane). A&E services at the RVI (Royal Victoria Infirmary) and the Northumbria hospital are not affected by these changes.

Anyone with a medical emergency should dial 999 or attend A&E at the RVI in Newcastle or the Northumbria hospital in Cramlington. The Northumbria Hospital is for serious injuries and potentially life-threatening emergencies only, and any patients presenting with minor illnesses will be referred back to the urgent care service in North Tyneside or to a North Tyneside GP practice.

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