THE homeless, mental health patients, and ex-prisoners are some of the vulnerable groups who rely on Solihull walk-in centre, a review has found.
Health bosses investigating the worth of the walk-in concept, including the service on the Solihull Hospital site, have completed the first stage of a review of the facilities.
A report to the Birmingham and Solihull Cluster board said the popular centre is busiest at weekends, bank holidays and afternoons, and is often used by Polish and Somali immigrants, those recently discharged from prison, and those with social and mental health needs.
The review has also found the patients are often referred to the centre by their GPs when they are busy or closed.
Bosses have admitted they have yet to find evidence the centre is offering value for money, and are struggling to collect the information to carry out a thorough review.
Nicola Benge, cluster director for public health, said: “The result of the review to date is that Birmingham and Solihull does not have a consistent model, the variation is considerable, and there is no evidence that costs accurately reflect the clinical skills and experience available in each centre.”
The walk-in centre review will contribute to a wider analysis of the urgent care structure, carried out by the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) - the body which takes over the running of Solihull’s healthcare next spring. More on the ongoing battle to keep the threatened premises on pages 14 and 15.