Burnley’s new £9m. Urgent Care Centre opens its doors to the public tomorrow (Tuesday).
The state-of-the-art purpose-built unit close to the Phase V building at Burnley General Hospital also incorporates the GP out-of-hours service and a children’s minor illnesses unit, while child neurological services are located on the first floor.
The Burnley Express was given a VIP tour of the new centre, which is accessed via the Briercliffe Road entrance ahead of the opening.
Hospital bosses said they were delighted with the centre but stressed blue light services are not returning to Burnley.
They said anyone with a life-threatening condition will continue to be treated at the emergency department at the Royal Blackburn.
The modern building has been designed with input from staff and is bright and spacious.
A main reception on the ground floor leads off to the urgent care centre, which includes individual cubicles to protect patients’ privacy, GPs out-of-hours service, which has been up to now located at the St Peter’s Health Centre, and the children’s minor illnesses unit which has been decorated in bright child-friendly colours.
Upstairs, the Rainbows unit, for children with chronic neurological illnesses, includes the latest sensory equipment and physiotherapy facilities. The unit will be used by youngsters who currently receive treatment at Reedley Hall, Rainbows, in Barrowford, and Stepping Stones, which hospital chiefs said have operated from buildings which are dated and not fit for purpose.
The existing Urgent Care Centre will be mothballed though services, such as outpatients, which are attached to that building, will continue to operate as normal.
The town’s community leaders were full of praise for the new centre.
Burnley Council leader Julie Cooper said: “It’s very impressive. It’s a fantastic facility for local people. It’s a sensible bringing together of services.”
Burnley MP Gordon Birtwistle added: “I did lobbying work speaking to Andrew Lansley and Danny Alexander and managed to secure the £9m. for this new building. It’s amazing.”