01 March 2010,

West London LIFT - Heart of Hounslow Officially Opened as Polyclinic by Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health Services

The highly successful The Heart of Hounslow polyclinic was officially opened on 25 February 2010 by Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health Services and MP for Brentford and Isleworth, Ann Keen.

The Heart of Hounslow has been a big hit with local residents in its first 10 months as a polyclinic. Over 20,000 people have used the walk-in practice that is open 8am to 8pm every day of the year. This demonstrates its value to local residents by providing convenient and accessible high-quality services. The range of services

  • walk-in practice open 8am to 8pm every day of the year

  • x-ray and ultrasound, usually only available within a hospital setting, in February 2010. It will be possible for patients to have their scans within the hours of GP referral for x-ray and ultrasound

  • a range of community-based services such as dermatology, ophthalmology and sexual health. Including cardiology services and a range of diagnostic tests and treatments, usually only available within a hospital setting

  • healthy food café specialising in fresh juice, smoothies and healthy eating

Polyclinics deliver a one-stop-shop approach to healthcare by making it possible to access a wide range of services in one centre. It was one the first polyclinics to open in London and will be one of 100 polyclinics planned open across London.

NHS Hounslow Chief Executive Nick Relph says "Polyclinics are designed to make it easier for people to receive better health and social care where and when they need it. The walk-in service complements the GP care that already exists in Hounslow by giving patients additional access to care at times when surgeries maybe closed or difficult to get to. As well as this, we have made it easier for people to get an appointment with a GP when they want one - most of our GPs open for longer earlier in the morning, later in the evening and some on Saturday mornings."

Nick added "We know a lot of people go to A&E with problems that aren't life threatening or are worried about their health. Often it's because people aren't sure where the best place to go is or because other services are closed. Offering routine access to a GP for 12 hours every day of the year at a town centre location should reduce the need for patients to use hospital accident and emergency departments. Patients do not need to register to use a walk-in centre at The Heart of Hounslow polyclinic and no appointment is needed."

The official launch aims to further raise the profile of the much needed centre and promote the excellent work that has already been done. Additionally, it is hoped it will act as a catalyst to raise awareness of the state of the art x-ray and diagnostic services amongst GPs and ensure local GPs are aware they exist and can make the necessary and relevant referrals.

For further information please contact Building Better Health