On behalf of The White Horse
There is a duty handed down by NHS England for the CCG to reorganise the Minor Injuries Unit, Walk-in Centre and Out of Hours as an Urgent Treatment Centre.
This is allied to a plan for a much improved 111 service, with 60% doctor / nurse input if you call, compared to 25% now.
Although this UTC was previously proposed to be sited at Gravesham Community Hospital, the opportunity to site it at Darent Valley has come up. There are advantages to the DVH proposal, but there will be a full public consultation on this. In the meanwhile, you can have your say on this on https://www.dartfordgraveshamswanleyccg.nhs.uk/…/urgent-tr…/
We are pushing for the long planned increased parking level construction plan at DVH to go ahead too. We don’t find 40 min parking queues funny, or acceptable either.
Various delays have led to the approach of the expiry of the current contract at the White Horse, which covers both Registered patients, and Walk-ins. With no commitments received, rumours and fears have understandably spread amongst the public, patients and staff. Today, however, it has been confirmed by email by the CCG that Walk-in service will continue at the White Horse site until the UTC opens, likely 1st July 2020.
There is a separate plan for the Registered list to combine with The Forge, and The Gateway on the Fleet Campus site, to form a new conventional practice, likely to be called Springhead Health. Whilst many details remain to be worked out, this is likely to go ahead from 1st July 2019.
The site is also likely to continue to host the Hub, as now, offering bookable appointments though other GP surgeries, the new GP Federation operated, paramedic led, Home Visiting Service, the new Wound Care Services, and we hope other new schemes run by the Federation, whose offices will also be there.
Springhead Health will also eagerly form an active part of the new Primary Care Networks, announced this week, groupings of GP Surgeries who will work co-operatively on a 30,000 to 50,000 patient scale with additional staff, such as Pharmacists, Physician Associates, Paramedics, Nurse Practitioners, and Advanced Nurse Practitioners and many others shared between them, to provide more services and appointments to fill the increased demand that already means you wait too long, and using the space freed up by the WIC move to provide more facilities and more clinicians for the expected increase in population.
It is a fact that nothing is certain until the final contracts are signed, but the White Horse team are determined to morph into the new bigger, better Springhead Health, and to serve the people of Northfleet, Gravesend and Ebbsfleet better even than the White Horse has for the last ten years.
Dr Nigel Sewell
Senior Partner at The Shrubbery, and Chairman of Fleet Healthcare, running The White Horse