Plan for drop-in health service for Worcester's homeless

Worcester News: The Worcester Walk-In Health Centre in Farrier Street The Worcester Walk-In Health Centre in Farrier Street

HOMELESS people in Worcester may soon benefit from a one-day-a-week drop-in medical service.

Concerns had been raised that closing the walk-in element of the Worcester Walk-In Health Centre in Farrier Street could mean homeless people in the city – who often cannot register at doctor’s surgeries – would find it difficult to get medical treatment.

But at a meeting of the South Worcestershire Clinical Commissioning Group on Thursday, chief clinical officer Dr Carl Ellson said the organisation was looking into setting up a drop-in service one day a week at the Maggs Day
Centre in Deansway.

“We are aware of the impact this could have on the homeless people of Worcester,” he said.

“We are in discussion with the city’s homelessness team about the possibility of commissioning a service for these people. One of the things our fact-finding has shown is a scatter-gun approach to the homeless.

“Some practices accept them and some don’t.”

The plans are part of the Worcestershire Urgent Care Strategy, a revamp of health services in the county which is expected to be completed in July.

The proposal to close the centre has faced fierce opposition throughout Worcester, with Labour’s parliamentary candidate for the city, Cllr Joy Squires, collecting 1,048 signatures on a petition opposing the closure.

Cllr Squires said, despite a nine-week public consultation, many people in the city did not feel their views had been canvassed.

“Clearly the closure of the walk-in centre is something which is of great importance to thousands of people in Worcester,” she said.

“They have not been asked about the closure and many homeless are being told they will need to go back to their GP, but the whole point of using the walk-in centre is they can’t get GP appointments.”

But the CCG’s director of strategy, David Mehaffey, said the consultation
into the plans had included the chance to provide feedback about the walk-in centre proposal.

“We never looked at the closure of the walk-in centre in isolation,” he said.

If the plans go ahead, the centre – which currently deals with 15,000
inquiries a year – will remain open only as a GP surgery from August.

Comments (2)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

1:23pm Tue 27 May 14

jb says...

I've never used this service as I've been lucky to stay with the same practice for many years but with all the reports about pressure on GP surgeries, A&E and out of hours services why on earth are they even considering closing this? It's not just the homeless people who would lose out its everyone else who would need to see a doctor and put more pressure on local surgeries and services, crazy!!!!
I've never used this service as I've been lucky to stay with the same practice for many years but with all the reports about pressure on GP surgeries, A&E and out of hours services why on earth are they even considering closing this? It's not just the homeless people who would lose out its everyone else who would need to see a doctor and put more pressure on local surgeries and services, crazy!!!! jb
  • Score: 4

3:54pm Tue 27 May 14

mooms32 says...

Until recently I worked in Farrier Street, and had occasion several times to use the walk-in facility. As these health issues cropped up during my working day I could be seen, and get any necessary medication/treatment
, with minimum delay, and time out of work. If I'd had to visit my own GP, always supposing I could get an appointment on the day, that would have meant far more delay in treatment, and also problems with lack of cover in a busy office whilst I travelled there and back. The walk-in is so useful for many reasons, whether someone is employed or not, homeless or not. It is an excellent facility, and should not be lost to the people of Worcester.
Until recently I worked in Farrier Street, and had occasion several times to use the walk-in facility. As these health issues cropped up during my working day I could be seen, and get any necessary medication/treatment , with minimum delay, and time out of work. If I'd had to visit my own GP, always supposing I could get an appointment on the day[which is unlikely unless you can telephone early in the morning], that would have meant far more delay in treatment, and also problems with lack of cover in a busy office whilst I travelled there and back. The walk-in is so useful for many reasons, whether someone is employed or not, homeless or not. It is an excellent facility, and should not be lost to the people of Worcester. mooms32
  • Score: 3

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree