NHS Urgent Care Walk-in Centres to Remain Closed

Units at Hammersmith and Charing Cross Hospitals and Parsons Green still shut

Picture: Julia Gregory

Local NHS walk-in centres and urgent treatment centres are not about to reopen, despite a reduction of coronavirus deaths.

In April, walk-in centres and urgent treatment centres in boroughs across the capital became temporary GP clinics that were only to be used by patients with COVID symptoms.

These included the Hammersmith Urgent Treatment Centre, at Hammersmith Hospital in White City, the Fulham NHS Urgent Care Walk-in Centre, at Charing Cross Hospital and the Parsons Green Walk-In Centre.

Many staff at these centres were also re-trained and sent to work in major hospitals with intensive care units, including the now-closed Nightingale Hospital in East London.

It has now been confirmed that these centres will remain closed for the foreseeable future.

The services are commissioned by North West London Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

A CCG spokesperson said, “At the moment we remain in a level 4 emergency, so our priority is to ensure our patients and staff are able to access and deliver care in a safe environment.

“Reopening the walk-in centres and urgent care centres that had to close on a temporary basis would not be the right thing to do at the moment as the advice is still to ring your GP practice or 111 where you will be given help and advice and a face to face appointment provided if it is needed.”

It comes after NHS England recorded that, on 1 June, only one person died in hospital from the virus.

Several London hospitals have also not reported a COVID-related death for two weeks or more.

There have been no deaths reported by North Middlesex Hospital since May 20, by the Whittington in Highgate since May 19, and by Hillingdon Hospital since May 13.

Owen Sheppard – Local Democracy Reporter

June 8, 2020