A pioneering new integrated NHS 111 telephone service and out-of-hours GP service has been launched across south west London by provider South London Doctors Urgent Care (SLDUC) – a partnership between national urgent care service provider Vocare and South East London Doctors (SELDOC).
The new service brings together the NHS 111 and the GP Out of Hours (OOH) service to provide a more streamlined service for patients. Patients will benefit from a wider mix of skills including specialist doctors and other healthcare professionals in a new NHS 111 clinical hub.
The new service, which covers the areas of Croydon, Kingston, Sutton, Merton and Richmond, is serving approximately 1.8 million patients across the region. South London Doctors Urgent Care (SLDUC) was chosen as the preferred bidder to provide an integrated NHS 111 and GP OOH service for the patients of South West London, following a competitive procurement process run with Kingston, Merton, Sutton and Wandsworth CCGs.
The new service is part of ongoing efforts to improve access to urgent care and emergency services in the area, and through integration, will give patients better access to a mix of specialist doctors and healthcare professionals.
John Harrison, chief executive of South London Doctors Urgent Care, said: "The integration of the two separate services enables patients to be referred to more than one service, such as mental health support as well as healthcare.
"Working closely with other local healthcare providers will allow for a more efficient patient journey and enhance the patient experience. After a successful launch we are looking forward to developing the new service further, working closely with local community services and ensuring full integration in order to deliver a high quality service to patients in the area."
Derek Witt, SELDOC's Director of Operations, said: "Vocare is a perfect partner for SELDOC in South West London. Both companies have similar values that place patients at the heart of everything we do and so it is with great enthusiasm that we embark upon our journey together.
"We are excited by the prospect of building on SELDOCs existing reputation for quality using local clinical staff with local knowledge to provide the best possible service to the residents of Kingston, Wandsworth, Merton and Sutton."