Rochdale’s Urgent Care Centre three years old and prepares for busy Easter school holidays

Rochdale’s Urgent Care Centre three years old and prepares for busy Easter school holidays
10 April 2014

Doctors and nursing staff at Rochdale Infirmary’s 24/7 Urgent Care Centre (UCC) are celebrating three years since opening and preparing for what they expect will be a busy couple of weeks as local children break up from school for the Easter holidays.

The UCC is open 24/7, 365 days a year and is run by experienced nurse practitioners, doctors and GPs who have the skills to treat approximately 85% of patients who would have previously been treated at the Infirmary’s A&E department.

The unit opened in April 2011 and in that time has seen and treated over 161,000 patients – on average around 4,500 patients per month.

Staff can treat non life-threatening walk-in injuries and ailments which don’t require an A&E department, but can not wait for a GP or on-call doctor's appointment. Patients with very serious injury or illness (999 calls) are taken, usually by ambulance, automatically to neighbouring A&E departments or a specialist hospital, where appropriate.

Sister Lou Harkness-Hudson, matron and nurse in charge of the Urgent Care Centre at Rochdale infirmary (pictured), said:

“The Urgent Care Centre has established itself at the heart of our community at Rochdale seeing around 4,500 patients each month. The majority of patients that previously attended the A&E department are using the UCC. To date over 161,000 patients have attended the centre since it opened, 45,000 of which have been children.

“We are thrilled to be celebrating three years since we opened the urgent care centre here at Rochdale Infirmary. We continue to treat hundreds of patients every week with a variety of injuries and illness. Our staff are really proud of our services and the care we provide here. It’s a great service provided by great staff. We have recently undergone some improvements to the facilities including the development of a new children’s triage, sensory room and family waiting area.

“Over the Easter bank holiday we would ask people to be careful whilst out enjoying themselves, but we are here to help and deal with people’s cuts, bumps, sprains, burns, fractures or other conditions that are so common at this time of year.  Whilst we are happy to see and treat people with minor injuries or minor illness, we would stress that adults with chest pains, or anyone with breathing difficulties or serious illness should ring 999. Equally, many minor complaints such as coughs and colds, insect bites, hay fever and allergies can be self-treated or advice obtained from a local pharmacy.”

Rochdale GP, Dr Lynn Hampson and clinical lead for NHS Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said:

“The success of the urgent care centre is just one example of the partnership working between the local commissioners and The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust to help drive improvements in healthcare ensuring services are local, safe and of good quality. The UCC continues to deliver excellent performance in terms of waiting times and quality of care since it opened three years ago. A major factor of this success is due to the collaboration between clinicians in primary care, the community and from the Infirmary. This means that patients are seen and treated quickly and efficiently at the centre or referred to the most appropriate treatment centre for their care”.

More information about the services provided at Rochdale Infirmary, including the Urgent Care Centre, can be found on YouTube and the website for The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust which runs the Infirmary.

Pictured: Young patient Tyla Warburton, 5 years old from Rochdale and a pupil from Whittaker Moss Primary School, with staff nurse Rabia Khanam at the Urgent Care Centre.