Planned changes to some children’s services at Ealing Hospital were given the go-ahead by Ealing Clinical Commissioning Group at a meeting on Wednesday 18 May.
The changes, which take effect from June 30 2016, see the children’s overnight or ‘inpatient’ ward close, from that date, ambulances will also stop taking children to A&E at Ealing Hospital. All other children’s services at the hospital, including urgent care, remain unchanged and should be used as normal.
A public information campaign has launched today to inform parents and carers of how to access urgent care for children in Ealing from 30 June 2016. A booklet ‘Changes to children’s services at Ealing Hospital’¹ will be made available throughout the borough.
The main messages for parents/carers are:
- In a life-threatening emergency call 999.
- If it’s not a life-threatening situation, you can go to Ealing Hospital’s urgent care centre, visit/call your GP or call NHS 111.
The urgent care centre (UCC) at Ealing Hospital will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, treating children and adults with minor illnesses and injuries that are urgent but not life-threatening, for example:
- sprains and strains
- minor burns to small areas
- minor cuts including those needing stitches
- common infections such as chest, ear or throat
- minor broken bones such as toes, ankles, wrists, fingers or collarbone.
If a child needs more specialist care than the urgent care centre can provide, they will be safely transferred to another hospital with an accompanying adult.
Speaking on behalf of Ealing Clinical Commissioning Group, Dr Mohini Parmar said:
“The changes have been approved by Ealing’s Clinical Commissioning Group’s Governing Body this week and are necessary to provide high quality seven-day children’s services across five hospitals in North West London. They will allow more specialist senior doctors to be available throughout the day and night to treat children. This will also improve the quality of clinical care and patient experience and get children back to health more quickly.”
It is important that people continue to use all of Ealing’s children’s services as normal until the end of June. After that date those using the children’s day services and the urgent care centre can continue to do so with confidence.
Along with improvements in care, all five children’s A&E departments in North West London: West Middlesex, Hillingdon, Northwick Park, Chelsea and Westminster and St Mary’s hospitals have seen significant investment, refurbishment and expansion.
These changes have also seen the introduction of paediatric assessment units (PAUs) on four sites. The PAUs will provide care in a more appropriate setting than A&E, for those that need assessment and treatment but don’t require an admission into hospital.
More information about the care provided at Ealing Hospital’s UCC can be found at www.healthiernorthwestlondon.nhs.uk
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Notes to editors
- An information booklet about the changes ‘Changes to children’s services at Ealing Hospital’ will be distributed through schools, health services, libraries and community groups. It can be accessed at: www.healthiernorthwestlondon.nhs.uk, translations and an easy read version will be made available.
- In 2014/15 the majority of children who walked into Ealing hospital needing care were treated in the UCC. Examples of the types of care provided in the UCC include: sprains and strains, minor burns to small areas, minor cuts including: those needing stitches; common infections such as chest, ear or throat; or minor broken bones such as toes, ankle, wrist, fingers or collarbone.
- In line with quality standards set out by the London Quality Standards and Royal College of Paediatric and Child Health.
- Summary of key changes:
- After 30 June urgent care for your children will be available 24 hours a day at Ealing Hospital through the Urgent Care Centre and in an emergency parents/guardians should dial 999 for an ambulance as they would now.
- Ambulances will stop taking children to the A&E at Ealing Hospital as the children’s overnight ward is closing. Ambulances will take children to West Middlesex, Hillingdon, Northwick Park, Chelsea and Westminster or St Mary’s hospitals depending on the child’s needs.
- If a child arrives at Ealing Hospital after 30 June needing more specialist care than the UCC can provide, they will be stabilised and safely transferred to another hospital.
- All other children’s daytime services, including routine appointments and day clinics, sometimes known as outpatients will stay at Ealing Hospital and these services along with the urgent care centre should be used as normal.
- Additionally, new services are being introduced in Ealing to make sure children can still be treated in the local area, either at the hospital or in the community.
- Anyone using the children’s ward at Ealing Hospital should continue to do so with confidence; it remains a safe place for children’s care.