Selby Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) is open 12 hours a day, seven days a week. The service is provided by Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust along with input from York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals.
UTCs are designed to ease the pressure on NHS hospitals, leaving other areas of the NHS free to treat more serious, life-threatening cases. Appointments at UTCs can be booked through calling 111 or through a referral from your GP.
Treatment centre operating on reduced service
Selby UTC is a high performing treatment centre but updates this year show that the centre has, on at least nine occasions, been operating on a reduced service or has had to limit its opening hours due to severe staff shortages.
The increased level of demand for the UTC has put pressure on the service with a review finding that staff shortages were “impacting on service resilience, potential patient safety, and the health and wellbeing of staff”.
The Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which has undertaken a review, has called for an urgent meeting to understand the risks, actions and next steps.
Patient safety is at the forefront of UTCs and without the centres enormous pressure would be placed on NHS hospitals. Selby UTC is incredibly high performance wise (98-100 per cent delivery against the national four hour waiting time target) and it is important for the district of York to maintain this high standard for its patients.
Wellbeing is incredibly important and particularly for those working within the NHS where there are constant pressures. It is important that staff shortages are reviewed so that staff can cope with the increased level of demand of services and that they are looking after themselves emotionally and physically, to provide the best care possible.
In my job as a lawyer I often see cases where patient care has fallen below the standard required due to pressures in the NHS. Mistakes can be made and the impact that this can have on patients is devastating.
It is important for both patients and staff to prevent failures in care from happening and it is reassuring to see that the pressures at Selby have been recognised and will be looked at.
At Irwin Mitchell, to improve patient safety and ensure the best outcomes for our clients who have been affected as a result of medical negligence, we often provide training to medical professionals regarding the patients perspective and to raise awareness of key issues. However, the key thing here is for the commissioners to support the maintenance of the high quality service at Selby so that the centre can continue to offer its services for 12 hours a day, every day.
We would urge any staff who are struggling with wellbeing and the pressure that this may cause of patient safety to speak with their employer. Staff mental health and wellbeing hubs are available nationally and information is provided on the NHS website.
Patient safety is paramount and to ensure that staffing levels and staff wellbeing has to be addressed.
Find out more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise in supporting patients and families affected by care issues at our dedicated medical negligence section.
Health bosses have scheduled a meeting to discuss the problems facing Selby Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC) after a review found staff shortages were “impacting on service resilience, potential patient safety, and the health and wellbeing of staff”.