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New unit offers same day care for acute medical conditions

A pilot scheme to help ease demand on York Hospital’s Emergency Department has proved so successful it has resulted in a purpose built unit opening this month.

The ambulatory care service is aimed at patients that require acute medical assessment but don’t necessarily need admission to a hospital bed. It is consultant led and staffed by a sister, an advanced clinical practitioner and a healthcare assistant.

Jo Welch, sister on the ambulatory care unit, said: “We see on average around 20 patients a day with certain conditions such as deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, cellulitis or chest pain. Some come after being sent to hospital by their GP, others may come from the Emergency Department or from wards within the hospital.

“When patients come to us we are able to fully assess and treat their conditions in the one unit – almost a one stop shop.

“The benefit to patients is that there are no long waits in A&E and there is no need for them to be admitted. This means there are more beds available for patients who do have to stay in hospital.”

The service was initially piloted by York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust at York Hospital in the Emergency Department before moving to ward 24 and has now has a purpose built area with four bays next to the acute medical assessment unit.

Hetta Winterburn, 79, from York was sent directly to the unit by her GP after falling ill with high blood pressure.

Hetta said: “I’ve had every test done and my blood pressure checked regularly throughout the day. Everyone has been really nice and made me very comfortable. I feel really reassured after having tests and I am being sent home with medication. I can’t thank the staff enough - wonderful!”

The ambulatory care unit is open seven days a week 9am until 9pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 3pm at weekends.

24 December 2015

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“The benefit to patients is that there are no long waits in A&E and there is no need for them to be admitted."

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Looking down a long bright hospital corridor with treatment rooms on the left and windows on the right. At the bottom of the corridor is one member of staff in a blue nursing uniform

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