Between Christmas Day and the end of New Year's Day 1997, our GP co-operative, which supports out-of-hours care in Northumberland and north Durham, handled 3,772 calls. During the same period last month, partly because of flu and a meningitis scare, the number was 8,492. Despite this increase in call volume, our hospital referral rate fell to 5.25 per cent and we managed, through having extra doctors and staff working, to sustain our normal high-quality response times.
We have an ageing population. Expectations are rising ahead of investment in healthcare; continued NHS modernisation and increased investment are essential or crises are inevitable.
Dr KEVIN McKENNA
Northern Doctors Urgent Care
Ashington, NorthumberlandReuse content