Thousands of patients are about to benefit from a scheme which is providing increased access to GP services in St Helens.
Patients registered at the 34 GP practices in the area covered by NHS St Helens Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) are now able to make use of three ‘hubs’ set up across the
borough which offer appointments over and above their usual GP surgery for both routine (pre-booked) and same-day appointments.
Patients can book through their normal GP practice but can choose to attend either of the locations that best suit them.
A fourth hub is planned to open in early 2019 in the north of the borough.
This scheme is in line with the planning guidance from NHS England that requires CCGs to provide access to GP services for 100 per cent of their population.
Patients will see either a GP or Advanced Nurse Practitioner who will have access to the same health records as a patient’s usual GP thanks to data sharing agreements in place to ensure the people are treated in the safest possible environment.
Appointments are available at:
Rainhill Clinic, View Road, Rainhill, L35 0LE. Monday to Friday 5pm - 9pm.
Millennium Centre, Corporation Street, St Helens, WA10 1HJ. Monday to Friday 5.30pm - 9pm, Saturday 8pm - 3pm, Sunday 8am - 12pm
Woodside Health Centre, Woodside Road, Haydock, WA11 0NA. Saturday 9am to 12pm, Sunday 9am to 12pm
Dr Mike Ejuoneastse, local GP and Governing Body Lead at St Helens CCG, said: “This service will not only improve access for patients, but will also increase the capacity in the
practices, which will have a further beneficial impact on patient waiting times and relieve the pressure of otherwise stretched GP practice resources.
“The GP Extended Access Service is available to any patient registered at a St Helens practice but will particularly help people who may have work or family commitments which make it hard for them to make appointments during normal surgery working hours.
“We will be closely monitoring the service to see what the impact is on general practice and our local A&E. We hope will prevent patients from turning up at the A&E department at
Whiston Hospital, greatly relieving the threat of added pressure there – especially as we move into the busy winter months."