Overhaul of Harrogate hospital's main entrance to introduce 'touchscreen' check-in

Patients at Harrogate District Hospital can expect to see some big changes to the front foyer in 2018.
Patients at Harrogate District Hospital can expect to see some big changes to the front foyer in 2018.
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Patients arriving at Harrogate District Hospital can expect to see some big changes to the main entrance of the building, as early as next year.

In June, the hospital secured £340,000 in government funding to introduce Primary Care Streaming (PCS) to its Emergency Department.

The funding was offered to enable PCS to be introduced in A&E departments across the UK, and has been rolled out in a bid to make sure patients receive the most appropriate care.

Chief Executive of Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust (HDFT), Ros Tolcher, said: “The refurbishment of the front entrance is about a lot more than just Primary Care Streaming, it’s improving people’s experience of coming onto the site and finding their way around.

“Primary Care Streaming is trying to make sure that people who come to the Emergency Department get seen by the most appropriate physician.

“Very often people come to A&E but what they need is primary care, so a GP or a trained physician to meet their primary care needs quickly.”

In Harrogate, this will mean creating a confidential space within A&E where patients can be clinically assessed as to whether they need to be seen within the Emergency Department or directed to the GP Out of Hours service, which is now co-located with the ED.

Creating this confidential space will require changes to the Paediatric waiting area in A&E and the two small offices in the main foyer.

It is anticipated this will be completed in early 2018, but the work will be combined with other projects in the main entrance area.

In July, HDFT took over the operation of the coffee shop in the main entrance area of the hospital.

Now the facility is due to undergo a complete refurbishment in the coming months, including the launch of a new menu.

Patients will also see the introduction of touchscreen ‘kiosks’ at the front entrance, to allow visitors to the outpatients department to check themselves in for appointments.

The touchscreen kiosks will ask patients to confirm their details and will tell them which waiting area to go to.

The Trust said some remodelling of the outpatient desk area will take place.

In its regular newsletter, the HDFT Herald, the Trust said: “While there will inevitably be some disruption while the refurbishment takes place, the aim is to create a smoother, quicker patient experience in all areas at the main entrance.”

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