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Health bosses set to recruit new staff for busy Spalding and Gainsborough urgent treatment centres

Health bosses have recruited new clinical staff to man the Johnson Community Hospital’s busy urgent treatment centre.

Lincolnshire Community Health Services Trust has confirmed that it has received an additional £421,000 to be spent on boosting the staff numbers at the urgent treatment centres in Spalding and Gainsborough after seeing an increase in patients.

This website has previously reported calls for the Spalding Road hospital to become a full accident and emergency unit after seeing the numbers using this service rocket in recent years.

Johnston Community Hospital in Spalding
Johnston Community Hospital in Spalding

Figures, previously released to us, show that 21,903 attended in the 2022/2023 financial year but this was forecast to rise to 28,901 at the end of the current financial year.

Julie Frake-Harris, Chief Operating Officer at LCHS said: “Over the course of the past two years activity has increased at Spalding and Gainsborough Urgent Treatment Centres (UTCs) for several reasons including, but not limited to, increased patient population, patient choice and the ease of same day access.

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“To appropriately manage this increased activity, Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust has secured £421,000 in funding allowing us to successfully recruit additional workforce above the existing model, in line with the increase in demand.

The trust had not been able to confirm how many additional staff members were going to be recruited to the Johnson site but did state that they would be looking to recruit health care support workers, nurses and advanced clinical practitioners.

Recent health trust board papers flagged resources issues at the ‘Spalding and Gainsborough UTCs’ – and said the high volume of patients was impacting on the sites’ performances with a requirement to assess patients within 15 minutes of arriving.

The documents to the January meeting stated: “Since September there have been a significant improvement across the majority of the UTCs however areas of concern remain as Spalding and Gainsborough which continue to see high demand, above the predicted figures for this time of year. They remain the most vulnerable sites, with lower performance impacting on adherence to this overall target.”

The site was upgraded from a minor injury unit – to deal with broken bones and sprains – to a UTC which can investigate, diagnose, and deal with common illnesses and injuries in 2021. It is hoped these centres can take the pressure off busy A&E departments across the area.

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