New ‘one stop shops’ to speed up diagnosis and save lives in South West London
A community diagnostic centre or ‘one stop shop’ will be developed in south west London, so patients have more choice and can receive life-saving checks close to their homes.
The local NHS has been awarded £10 million to invest in a large centre at Queen Mary’s Hospital, which will offer a large range of tests and scans to increase capacity and speed up diagnosis, making services more convenient for all local people, especially those who live in deprived areas.
The centre is one of 40 new one stop shop diagnosis centres in community locations across the country.
GPs will be able to refer patients to the centre for faster access to diagnostic tests means people can start treatment sooner for serious conditions like cancer and heart problems, and as early treatment can be more effective, this can mean better outcomes for patients.
The significant expansion of services at Queen Mary’s will also be supported new and expanded community ‘satellite’ sites in areas of greatest need for greatest benefit to people across south west London.
The programme will also help to manage the backlog created by the pandemic.
Dr John Clark, Clinical lead for diagnostic services in south west London and a consultant medical microbiologist, said: “This is great news for local people who will have faster access to tests, checks and scans, meaning they can start treatment sooner for serious conditions like cancer and heart problems or get the all-clear, providing peace of mind.
“As well as making services more convenient for local people, the new ‘one stop shop’ will also increase our testing capacity to help the local NHS to manage the backlog created by the pandemic.”
Dr Nicola Jones, GP and place-based leader for health in Wandsworth said: “This new diagnostic centre alongside the community ‘satellite’ testing services mean that patients needing several tests can have them done in one day, rather than waiting longer for multiple visits to hospital.
“Early diagnosis is crucial to saving lives and for peace of mind, which is why these plans will have tangible benefits for our patients.”
Matthew Kershaw, South West London lead for diagnostic services and place-based leader for health in Croydon, said: “These new diagnostic centres represent a real step change in the way people will be diagnosed and treated. Developing some services out of hospital and into the community, will make services easier to access, especially for the most deprived in our community.
“We hope that this expansion of our local services will only be the first step in our comprehensive plans to revolutionise diagnostic capacity across south west London.”
Residents will be able to have several tests on the same day without needing to wait and a range of healthcare professionals including GPs and hospital doctors can refer patients to the services. Diagnostics centres will offer a range of tests and scans which could include:
1. imaging (e.g. ultrasounds, X-rays, mammograms),
2. cardiology tests (testing for heart conditions),
3. pathology (testing body tissues and fluids),
4. phlebotomy (testing blood)
5. endoscopy (looking at organs inside the body using an endoscope).
It is important to ensure the new services meet the needs of our residents, which is why we are listening to what local people think to help inform these proposals.
Jacqueline Totterdell, Chief Executive at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust that runs Queen Mary’s, said:
“St George’s is very pleased to play its part in reducing the backlog in South West London by running this one stop shop for tests and scans which will speed up treatment for local people.
“St George’s has already opened a new surgical treatment centre to create additional capacity to carry out routine surgical procedures and by working together, the local NHS will further reduce the number of patients waiting for a diagnosis through the one stop shop to ensure patients receive the treatment they need as quickly as possible.”
Jo Farrar, Chief Executive at Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Interim Chief Executive at Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare NHS Trust, and placed-based leader for health in Richmond said:
“We are delighted to be able to make use of this additional diagnostics capacity on the Queen Mary’s Hospital site and in other community locations locally, ensuring that people get the tests they need in a timely way. We are working with local people and our NHS partners in SW London to design services that meet the needs of our residents.”
New, enhanced or expanded diagnostic services will also be available in the following locations:
1. The Wilson (East Merton)
2. The Nelson (West Merton)
3. St Johns Therapy Centre (Latchmere/Queenstown)
5. Raynes Park
7. Kingston Hospital modular build (satellite for audiology)
Plans have also been submitted for funding to develop a brand-new diagnostic centre in Croydon and expand services at St Helier hospital.
Our plans align with the recommendations of the Professor Sir Mike Richards reviews of diagnostic services, which aim to help save lives and improve people’s quality of life including for cancer, stroke, heart disease and respiratory conditions.
Notes to editors
Press Office SWL CCG
South West London CCG