London opens first Polyclinics27th May 2009
The first seven polyclinics in London opened on the 28th April providing faster, more convenient, high-quality health services for patients.
Among the seven are two projects from the Drivers Jonas project management and building consultancy team - "Alexandra Avenue" and "The Barkantine." The projects were both successfully completed a few years ago but have recently undergone minor changes to achieve polyclinics status.
The polyclinics, located in some of the most deprived parts of London, will offer GP services 7 days a week 8am to 8pm, together with services provided at hospital, such as outpatient appointments, minor surgery, blood tests and x-rays. They will also provide access to pharmacy services.
People in London currently have to wait longer to see their GP than anywhere else in the country. The introduction of the first polyclinics will provide a wider range of health and wellbeing services planned around those who need to use them and open for longer for everyone.
Polyclinics also offer a solution to the problems of GP access and stretched A&E departments. A&E attendances are predicted to increase by 60 per cent in the next 10 years unless we improve access to local services. In a polyclinic, people in London can get immediate attention for minor injuries and illness, and access many of the healthcare services available at hospitals. Treating minor injuries and illnesses will reduce unnecessary trips to hospital.
All 31 primary care trusts (PCTs) in the capital are currently developing plans for polyclinics and in the next five years they will be introduced throughout London.
Commenting on the new polyclinics, Ruth Carnall, Chief Executive of NHS London, said, “Today’s launch of seven polyclinics sees Lord Darzi’s vision of improving healthcare for London become a reality. Polyclinics will transform primary and community care in London for the better, delivering accessible, high-quality services which will ultimately reduce health inequalities."
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