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Weymouth Community Hospital has been designated to run one of the first 150 NHS Urgent Treatment Centres (UTCs) operating across the country.
The service will continue to provide all of the walk-in care currently available at the hospital’s Urgent Care Centre, with expert clinicians and X-ray facilities on hand to deal with non-life threatening minor ailments and injuries.
However, local people will soon be able book a UTC appointment via GP practices and the NHS 111 service, meaning they can be seen more quickly.
Starting on Sunday (24 June), the UTC will be open from 8am-8pm, seven days a week. It will be run by Dorset HealthCare, in partnership with Dorset County Hospital and local GPs, and be located next to the hospital entrance in Melcombe Avenue, Weymouth.
It will offer treatment for broken bones, cuts, sprains, minor head injuries and much more. Bookable appointments will be introduced shortly.
Weymouth Hospital replaced its Minor Injuries Unit with an Urgent Care Centre two years ago, which has been a big success. The team has seen more than 13,000 people so far in 2018, saving patients a trip to the emergency department at Dorset County Hospital and providing the care that people need quickly and close to home.
And this success meant the centre was ideally placed to become a UTC, the model the Government wants to see introduced across the country.
Helen Persey, Dorset HealthCare’s Locality Manager for Weymouth and Portland, said:
“We are delighted that Weymouth has been chosen as one of the first 150 Urgent Treatment Centres in the country. We are already offering most of the services the Government expects from a UTC, so this is the logical next step.
“It will continue our work to bring care closer to home and reduce waiting times. Over time, the UTC model will be rolled out across Dorset.”