Wakefield’s NHS walk-in centre and Pontefract’s A&E both under review

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The future of the city’s NHS walk-in centre is under review as part of a planned shake-up of emergency care.

People can see medics without an appointment at the centre, which is run by Local Care Direct under a contract which expires in September.

The future of the walk-in service on King Street, where there is a separate GP surgery, will be decided as part of plans to speed up access to urgent and emergency care.

Wakefield Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has been working with GPs to extend surgery opening hours after a public consultation on emergency care was carried out.

People could also be offered urgent GP appointments within four hours of calling their surgery.

Dr Adam Sheppard, the CCG’s clinical lead for emergency care, said: “Last summer we talked to local people about what they want from their GP practice and, in particular, how they want to access care when they have an urgent health need.

“We have also been working with local doctors and other health professionals, and reviewing the national evidence of what gives the best results for patients.

“Taking all this together, we are now going to ask people what they think about the developing plans.

“It is all part of an ongoing dialogue, and we really hope that people will get involved.”

The CCG is also looking at new ways of keeping Pontefract’s A&E department open 24-7 after concerns were raised over shortstaffing.

There was an outcry in 2011 when Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust was forced to close Pontefract A&E overnight because it could not recruit enough emergency doctors.

It reopened 24-7 after a private company was brought in to staff the A&E at night with emergency-trained GPs.