Northampton's Waterside Campus turned into coronavirus clinic
Northampton University’s waterside campus has been turned into a temporary coronavirus clinic and several more are going to be set up across the county.
Corby’s urgent care centre could also become one of the new clinics that are being established by the county’s NHS so that those with Covid-19 symptoms can be seen face to face by a doctor or healthcare professional.
The centres will not be walk-in venues and people will only be able to go along after a referral from their GP. There will also not be any testing done in the clinics, which will stay in place throughout the pandemic.
After being assessed at the clinic, patients may be able to return home to self-care or they may be referred onwards for treatment in a hospital or community healthcare setting.
GP Clinical Lead for NHS Northamptonshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) Dr Naomi Caldwell said : “As we approach the expected coronavirus peak in the coming weeks, more and more people will unfortunately experience COVID-19 symptoms and quite rightly have to isolate themselves at home to stop the spread of the virus.
“That means they wouldn’t be able to see their GP or visit a local urgent care facility in the normal way – so we want to make sure we have the right services in place to enable them to have a face-to-face medical assessment if they need to.
“Anyone isolating with COVID-19 symptoms should first visit the NHS 111
website at 111.nhs.uk/coronavirus for advice and information, but if they have an urgent medical concern – whether coronavirus related or not – they should call their GP practice in the usual way. If their GP thinks they need to visit one of our new clinics they will be told what they need to do, where to go and when.
“These clinics cannot accept walk-in patients and in order to keep them running safely and protect staff, patients and the general public, it’s really important to stress that people should only ever go if instructed by their own GP.”
The first of the new clinics opened on Tuesday (April 7)l at the University of
Northampton’s Waterside campus. The university closed the majority of its buildings in mid March and suspended face to face lecturers.
Temporary buildings have been set up at the campus for initial ‘drive-through’ assessment, followed by face-to-face medical examination in a safe environment if required.
Six further clinics are expected to open at sites around the county within the next two weeks. Specific locations for these sites are yet to be finalised, but health leaders say will be strategically situated in and around Northamptonshire’s major towns to ensure they are as easy to access as possible.
A potential location under consideration for the Corby clinic is the town’s Urgent Care Centre in Cottingham Road. The NHS says that should this site be chosen for a COVID-19 clinic, an urgent care service would continue to run as normal from the centre, with COVID-19 patients accessing the building via a separate entrance and exit.
A new primary care home visiting service for housebound patients, accessible through GP practices has been established as part of Northamptonshire’s COVID-19 response.
The number of coronavirus cases in the county has gone over the 500 mark, but the actual number is expected to be much higher as testing levels are low.
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