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GP-led urgent care centre cuts A&E admissions ‘by half’

A GP-led urgent care centre has cut A&E admissions by between a third and half, MPs have been told.

NHS England medical director Sir Bruce Keogh told the House of Commons Health Committee that Corby Urgent Care Centre in Northamptonshire was seeing patients within 15 minutes and reducing overnight stays at Kettering General Hospital – eight miles away – by between 30 and 50%.

Giving evidence to the Health Committee’s inquiry into urgent and emergency care, Sir Bruce outlined the recommendations in his review of urgent and emergency care in England which will be implemented over the next three to five years.

He added: ‘In the meantime, a lot of CCGs are doing really good things in terms of developing services close to home.

‘One example might be Corby Urgent Care Centre which is well-equipped and adjacent to a GP practice. They have facilities for doing urgent blood tests and x-rays and are seeing patients within 15 minutes.

‘It has reduced overnight stays for adults at Kettering A&E by around 30% when I was there last, but I think that may have gone up to 50% now.’

Corby Urgent Care Centre is open 365 days a year, from 8 a.m. until midnight, operating a no-appointment system and is staffed by two doctors, three nurses, a healthcare assistant, receptionists and security staff. The centre opened in October 2012.