Hospital launches services to address NHS shortfall

By Tim Aldred

13 Mar 2024

Beardwood Hospital

The Beardwood Hospital, part of Circle Health Group, has launched a new private GP service offering patients in Blackburn and the wider area face-to-face consultations.

The addition of the new service is part of a wider project that is currently taking place at the hospital to enhance and expand the facilities and services on offer to patients across the community.

The hospital says that demands on primary care services in Blackburn are at an all-time high with a shortage of GPs being one of the main reasons for delays in getting appointments and access to treatment.

GP services are an essential component in the patient's pathway. Failing to get a proper diagnosis or proper triaging can often leave patients failing important pre-assessments. The result of such failings only delays the patients care further and ultimately makes waiting times worse.

Each new appointment will cost £120 for a duration of 30 minutes with further time available for an additional fee. The length of the consultations has been designed to give patients the opportunity to fully discuss their condition or health concerns with the specialist.

The service is being launched Dr Nazneen Begum with plans in place to add more in the coming months. Dr Begum will be able to support patients looking for general health advice, check-ups, and tests. Additionally, the enhanced primary care offering at the hospital will also support patients needing treatment for minor, acute, and chronic illnesses.

Following the consultation, should the patient require further support, a referral can be made directly to one of the specialist consultants. This removes the potential for lengthy waits and reduces stress to the patient.

Philip O’Ehley, executive director of The Beardwood Hospital, said: "For the hospital, it gives opportunities to link with the community to offer services that we have not offered before. GP Services are quite restricted within the NHS, this gives an opportunity for private patients to have fast access to diagnostics, pathology, and onward referrals.”

“It’s a really exciting time for the hospital, it’s a good growth opportunity and enables us to give direct access to the community.”

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