Students have joined the fight to save an NHS walk-in centre from closure.
The University of Lincoln Students’ Union has launched a petition against the planned shut down of the NHS Walk-in-Centre on Monks Road in the city.
The petition, which went live at 10am on Thursday, June 15, has already received hundreds of signatures.
Those signing up have added their voices to the thousands of others who have supported a different petition demanding the same outcome.
Thomas Hoare, one of the students backing the petition, said: “I’ve been helped by the walk-in before and can attest that it’s a very useful resource. Everyone that works there tried their best to help, and it would be a waste of a valuable asset.”
Sophie Pickford, another student who expressed her support, said: “I know people who have needed to use the clinic often and the people there have been so helpful to them, especially when it’s so hard to get an appointment with a GP.”
President of the SU, Kudzai Muzangaza, also shared the petition on his twitter page.
The appeal, called ‘Don’t walk out on our walk in’, is accompanied by a description that says they are “very disappointed” at the prospect of the closure.
It goes on to say: “As a key service in the city of Lincoln, the walk-in-centre provides care for the student population, alongside relieving pressures on other services in the area.
“Its closure will have a negative impact on its main and regular service users therefore this petition stands to oppose the CCG’s decision to close this service.”
The petition comes after a similar one, ‘Save Lincoln’s only walk-in-centre from closure by short-sighted Lincolnshire West CCG’, was launched three days ago.
The initial petition was created by Dean Graham, and currently has 3,765 signatures.
Several students have signed it, including Malika Hunter, who said: “I go to university at the uni of Lincoln, and our doctors on campus is awful, this clinic helps us! And we need the walk in centre!”
The NHS says a review of the service at the centre suggests the majority of users do not need to be there and could be treated elsewhere.
NHS Lincolnshire West Clinical Commissioning Group has launched a public consultation with patients and stakeholders around replacing services at the centre with extended hours in alternative GP surgeries, an enhanced NHS 111 service and supporting people to self-manage their health conditions.
Patients are being encouraged to share their views on the proposed future model for urgent, non-emergency care – focusing on working towards offering extended access to GP services, seven days a week.
Following a review of the service, evidence suggests most of the users at the Monks Road site are either students and/or patients registered with Lincoln city centre medical practices.
Research indicates 95 per cent of Lincoln Walk-in-Centre users required no investigation or treatment, or received minor treatment for minor ailments.
The latter includes help for minor illnesses such as a cold, headache or conjunctivitis – which could be treated using over the counter medicines from pharmacies, the group says.