Funding has been secured for a new £19.4 million Community Diagnostic Centre to be built in Scunthorpe Town Centre.
The centre – which is due to begin offering some services to the public this winter – will be a one-stop-shop for health checks, scans, and tests, providing you with access to a range of diagnostic tests closer to home, reducing the need to come into hospital and reducing waiting times.
Chief Executive of Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust, Peter Reading, said: “Our priority will always be to provide our patients with excellent standards of care – and we believe that moving some of our diagnostic services out into the community will allow us to do that.
“I’m delighted to say that we have been successful in bidding for £19.4 million from the national funding Community Diagnostic Centre programme to fund the scheme and have submitted a planning application to create a bespoke hub, off Lindum Street – right in the heart of Scunthorpe town centre.
“Our plans are at a very early stage but, should our planning application be successful, we will work with our partners in Primary Care, Community healthcare and North Lincolnshire Council to build the new facility, where we will be able to offer patients tests for a range of conditions, such as cancer, heart and lung disease – including X-Rays, MRI, ultrasound, and CT scans.”
Patients will be referred to the centre by their GP or consultant, and it will operate in parallel to our diagnostic departments at Scunthorpe General for inpatients and those requiring emergency care.
This will allow us to conduct an estimated 146,000 additional checks every year, enabling us to see more patients, more quickly, reducing waiting times and helping you to access the care you need in a more timely way.
This is not only more convenient for patients but is also more efficient for staff and frees up clinician time to help further cut the waiting lists.
Alex Seale, North Lincolnshire Place Director, NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board, said: “One of the biggest potential benefits to you as patients would be that you’d no longer need to come onto our busy hospital site in order to have these tests carried out. Instead, you’ll be able to go to the town centre, where parking is plentiful and there are excellent public transport links. This also has the added benefit of freeing up parking for those who do need to come to the hospital.
“There are also infection control benefits, as reducing the number of people coming to our acute hospital sites naturally reduces the risk of spreading infections.
“We are very excited about the plans and the benefits they could bring to you, and we look forward to hearing whether our application has been successful.”
Leader of North Lincolnshire Council, Councillor Rob Waltham, added: “This is great news for North Lincolnshire residents and another positive note for the High Street with more Government cash backing the plans to build a new future.
“This new health centre will have a massive impact on residents’ access to critical health services, further improving health and wellbeing for thousands of people.
“It is also further good news for the town centre in Scunthorpe – a major investment, backed by government, which will drive more people into the town centre for more reasons.”
The funding for the scheme was announced today by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Steve Barclay, who also revealed funding had been granted for a further five Community Diagnostic Hubs across the country.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said:“I have pledged to cut waiting lists and these new Community Diagnostic Centres will do exactly that. By offering checks, tests and scans closer to home, we can speed up the diagnosis of illnesses like cancer and heart disease and ensure patients get their treatment quickly.
“These centres revolutionise the way the NHS delivers care and crucially, they are saving lives.”
Mr Barclay added: “Based in the heart of communities, they are making it easier for people to access life-saving checks and cutting out unnecessary hospital visits.
“They have already made a huge difference, delivering nearly four million tests, checks and scans since the programme started in July 2021, helping to deliver on the government’s commitment to cut waiting lists.”
Dr Vin Diwakar, NHS Medical Director for Transformation, said:
“The NHS delivered a record 2.3 million diagnostic tests in March, up more than 128,000 on the previous monthly record, thanks to the hard work and dedication of our staff.
“These new CDCs will continue to increase access to care by providing vital scans, X-rays, endoscopies and blood tests closer to patients’ homes, building on the progress we have already made to drive down the longest waits and diagnose cancer earlier.”