HEALTH bosses have moved to explain the services on offer at the One Life Hartlepool health centre.
Since the University Hospital of Hartlepool’s A&E department closed in August there has been confusion among residents as to where to go for treatment for minor illnesses and injuries and more serious cases.
The £20m One Life Hartlepool centre, in Park Road, includes an Urgent Care Centre made up of a minor injuries unit, a walk-in centre and out of hours service.
But there has also been confusion as to who actually runs which section.
Health chiefs have moved to explain the set-up at the state-of-the-art Urgent Care Centre.
●A walk-in centre for minor illnesses such as sore throats, ear aches, bladder infections and abdominal pain.
The centre is open between 8am and 8pm every day and is provided by Assura Medical.
● A 24-hour minor injuries unit for sprains and cuts run by North Tees & Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust.
● An out-of-hours service run by Northern Doctors Urgent Care.
This service is available weekdays Monday to Friday between 6.30pm-8am and 24-hours throughout Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays.
Anyone who is seriously ill or severely injured should call 999 and the ambulance service will decide the best place to go.
Patients whose GPs ask for them to be taken to hospital because of a medical emergency are taken to the emergency assessment unit at the University Hospital of Hartlepool .
People who ring 999 themselves with a serious medical problem will be assessed by the paramedic and taken to the appropriate hospital – often this will be the University Hospital of Hartlepool .
NHS Tees commission the services at One Life Hartlepool.
Steve Wallace, chairman of NHS Tees, said: “I, like everyone, want to receive the right health care, at the right time and at the right place.
“In recent months NHS Hartlepool has come a lot closer to achieving that goal.
“This is great news for the town as local residents can now access the out of hours service, walk-in centre 8am – 8pm and 24/7 minor injuries care right in the heart of our town.
“I am also really pleased to see staff at the Urgent Care Centre making the quality of their service a top priority for patients.
“With continued high demand for NHS services across Hartlepool and the rest of the region, I would like to remind people how to access the right help and support, to help ease pressure on busy hospital teams and essential emergency services.
“If you’re seriously ill or severely injured, call 999.
“If you are unwell and have an illness such as a sore throat and cough, see your GP, or else go to the 8am – 8pm GP walk-in centre, or phone NHS Direct.
“If you’re walking wounded and have injuries such as sprains and cuts, go to One Life Hartlepool where the minor injuries unit is open 24/7.
“Remember, choose wisely, choose well.”