TWO NEW primary care hubs have been set up to help local people showing signs of the coronavirus.
The two hubs have been created to support people who don’t need immediate hospital treatment, but have already gone through a structured medical assessment.
They will be located in the Walk in Centre in Reading’s Broad Street Mall, and a new contained area at Newbury Racecourse’s East entrance.
Anyone starting to show the coronavirus symptoms of a constant cough and, or a high temperature, will still initially be asked to self isolate for seven days and seek advice from NHS 111 online if required.
Patients will then be referred on to their GP practice or one of the hubs where appropriate.
The hubs are due to open this week, and are being organised by health officials from the Berkshire West Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in partnership with local GPs.
It is hoped they will ease the burden on other healthcare facilities, and free up hospital doctors to deal with more urgent coronavirus cases.
The Reading and Wokingham Primary Care Hub at the Walk in Centre will be open every day from 8am to 8pm.
Patients who are registered at the Centre are being temporarily moved to the neighbouring Milman Road surgery.
No walk in care will be available at the Centre at this time.
Cathy Winfield, chief officer for the CCG said: “This virus is placing huge, constant and ever changing demands on our healthcare services both within GP surgeries, and at our local hospitals.
“These hubs will be specifically for patients who have, or are likely to have, coronavirus. They will not be able to cater for the public looking for general medical support.
“The advice to these people is very clear – if you have the constant cough and/or high temperature you must stay at home, keep your distance from other people in the house and contact the 111 online service if you want extra advice.”
For full details on the hubs and how they will operate, visit: www.berkshirewestccg.nhs.uk