15/09/2022 | Press releases

Get fast, convenient health tests at Clacton’s Community Diagnostic Centre

People living in north Essex can now get fast access to health tests such as CT scans, x-rays and ultrasounds at a time convenient to them at Clacton’s brand new Community Diagnostic Centre (CDC).

The centre has been created in space at Clacton Hospital, which has been given a £9.6 million facelift to transform it from tired and dated into a modern, welcoming and bright environment ideal for 21st century healthcare. The new-look unit opened its doors earlier this summer.

Patients coming to Clacton will not only receive a warm welcome from staff and be able to have their tests in spacious and state-of-the-art surroundings, but will also wait less time to be seen. As the CDC caters largely for outpatients and people referred by their GP, it is able to offer CT scans within just two weeks compared with six at Colchester Hospital, which means that patients will also get their results more quickly.

“The CDC offers fast, convenient access to a wide range of diagnostic tests without the need to wait,” said James Archard, programme director from East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT), which runs the centre.

“We are really proud of the environment it provides, which is fresh, modern and welcoming. The centre also has a really relaxed atmosphere, which patients tell us they find very reassuring if they are feeling anxious before their test.

“Unlike Colchester, the CDC doesn’t see any emergency patients, which means there’s far less chance of your appointment being cancelled, and it’s also much more likely to take place on time. This means you can arrive a few minutes beforehand and know that you won’t need to wait for your scan or test to take place, allowing you to get back to the things which matter to you.”

The refurbished centre includes new CT, blood testing and cardio-respiratory suites, where patients can have lung function tests, echocardiograms and ECGs, as well as modern changing rooms and comfortable waiting areas. Work is now taking place to upgrade the footpaths outside the building, while up to 30 additional spaces are also being added to the existing car park, where patients can park for free.

“The CDC operates seven days a week, from 8am to 8pm, which means we can provide appointments that are closer to home and more accessible and convenient to all patients,” said Steve Burnett, operational manager for the CDC.

“By coming for their scans at Clacton, patients will benefit from shorter waiting times and are also helping others by reducing demand at Colchester Hospital, which opens up capacity for patients who need urgent care. This is great news as it improves diagnostics for everyone.”

The next phase of the project is due to begin in November and will see a further £14.2m invested. A permanent MRI suite will be created to replace the mobile unit which is currently in the car park, along with additional ultrasound capacity, two more x-ray suites and space for future urology and endoscopy services. The whole project has been made possible by a partnership of ESNEFT, GP Primary Choice Ltd, Community Voluntary Service Tendring, Tendring District Council and Essex County Council and will be complete by 2024.

You can contact Clacton’s Community Diagnostic Centre by calling 01255 201647.

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