Blackpool’s Walk-In Centre, in Whitegate Drive, and Fleetwood’s Same Day Health Centre, in Dock Street, have been re-branded as ‘Urgent Treatment Centres’.
The move comes after changes last year to the way both NHS services work.
While the Walk-In Centre never traditonally offered appointments and the Same Day Health Centre never offered a walk-in service, both now offer both – with the re-naming done to avoid confusion amongst patients.
The cost of the re-branding, with signs changed at both buildings, has yet to be revealed.
The Gazette has asked Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which is responsible for organising and paying for residents’ healthcare.
Speaking for the NHS on the Fylde coast, chief operating officer at Blackpool CCG, David Bonson (inset), said: “Many patients are understandably confused about which part of the NHS offers which service, and by then relying on A&E they are being treated in wrong setting.
“This is bad for the local NHS because it puts unnecessary pressure on A&E and other parts of the urgent and emergency care system.
“The new standard brings in a clear and comprehensive offer to patients. Urgent treatment centres are usually a GP-led service, open for at least 12 hours a day, every day of the week, every week of the year, including bank holidays – and offering pre-bookable appointments.
“They have access to simple diagnostics such as swabs and pregnancy tests and have access to x-ray facilities, as well as a range of other services. They can also issue prescriptions and e-prescriptions.”
Apart from the name changes, there are no further changes planned. Pre-booked appointments are available at both services by calling NHS111 between 8am and 8pm, seven days a week.