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New entrance and clear signage improve patient flow at the Walk-In Centre

walkin centreAfter a decade of sharing the same entrance with the Emergency Department, the Walk-In Centre has now got its own entrance door next to A&E.

The new sliding doors were installed earlier in the year and officially launched last week.

So far, many patients with minor ailments have presented to A&E reception before being directed to the Walk-In Centre next door, which meant more pressures on an already stretched A&E department. A separate entrance and clear signage means improved access for patients with non-emergency conditions, who can come straight into the Walk-In Centre.

Steve Jones, Clinical Director for Emergency Services, said: 'A CCG walk around identified that we needed better signs to direct people to the right area for them. The doors seemed like a relatively easy way to achieve this. It has also had the benefit of releasing capacity in the Emergency Department so we can focus on patients with more serious and urgent presentations.'

The Centre, formerly known as Primary Care Emergency Centre (PCEC), was established 10 years ago to provide better access for patients with primary care needs but who were unable to get to their GP. Since then it has expanded and provides same day assessment and treatment for patients walking in with minor ailments and injuries and has been renamed to reflect the change.

Matron Jaime Correia said: 'The short time the doors have been open has shown an increase of patients' attendances at the Walk-In Centre. A better patient flow means that the number of patients in the A&E waiting room has gone down.'

Healthwatch Manchester has supported the project with a report produced after interviewing patients in both the A&E and Walk-In Centre waiting room.

Neil Walbran, Chief Officer of Healthwatch Manchester, said: 'The staff and volunteers at Healthwatch Manchester are pleased and proud to have played a role in improving the Walk-In Centre.'

The Walk-In Centre is open 365 days per year, from Monday to Friday 8.30 am - 10.00 pm, Saturday and Sunday (including Bank holidays) 10.00 am -10.00 pm. The Matron is Jaime Correia (Tel. 276 5193 or 276 4197).