Emma Friddin from Healthwatch Enfield welcomes news that Chase Farm’s urgent care centre will stay open until 10pm
In September’s edition of Enfield Dispatch we told you about the work we have been doing to ensure local people’s voices are heard on proposals to reduce the opening times at Chase Farm Hospital’s urgent care centre.
We wrote to Enfield Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) recommending they maintain the current daily opening times of 8am-10pm, based on the views and experiences you told us about. Despite proposing in September to close the centre an hour earlier at 9pm, Enfield CCG has now agreed to keep the urgent care centre at Chase Farm open until 10pm – just as it is at present.
At Healthwatch Enfield we have taken an active interest in the opening hours of the centre at Chase Farm Hospital. Following an earlier intervention in February the current hours were retained, before the proposal to close the centre at 9pm was put to the public in June.
During this consultation period, we engaged with almost 400 Enfield residents to hear their views about the proposals – and 84% of you told us that you did not agree with the earlier closing time. You told us about concerns relating to the provision of urgent care services in Enfield, the potential difficulties of accessing urgent care services, and the impact this will have on accident and emergency (A&E) departments and the ambulance service. You continued to tell us stories where you have used the urgent care centre as an alternative to attending A&E and received high-quality, timely care.
Using your views and experiences, we published our report What local people think about the proposals to reduce the opening times of the Urgent Care Centre at Chase Farm Hospital. We also wrote to Enfield CCG, asking them to consider local people’s views as the decision about the opening hours was being made.
This is an example of how sharing your feedback can really make a difference. Patricia Mecinska, chief executive of Healthwatch Enfield, said: “We are delighted that the views of local people reflect the decision made by NHS Enfield CCG.
“We will continue to monitor the opening hours of the urgent care centre at Chase Farm Hospital and we will seek to ensure that the voices of local residents are represented as further reviews take place.”