NHS Gloucestershire has today announced that Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust has been awarded the contract to provide an Integrated Urgent Care Service (IUCS) for local patients.

IUCS includes NHS 111 (telephone and online), a local Clinical Assessment Service offering patients access to general and specialist advice from clinicians where appropriate and the Primary Care Out of Hours service*.

IUCS will play a key role in supporting joined up urgent care advice and support across the county 24/7.

Services delivered by community pharmacies, GP surgeries, dental practices, community minor illness and injury units and A&E departments in the county will continue to be provided.

NHS Gloucestershire’s Director of Transformation and Redesign, Ellen Rule said:

“Providing high quality and joined up urgent care services for local patients is a top priority for NHS Gloucestershire.

Today’s announcement follows a comprehensive and rigorous procurement and evaluation process, which included service user representation.

We look forward to working with the Trust, their partner IC24 and other health and care professionals locally, to deliver an excellent service to our patients. IUCS will play an important role in helping people to get timely advice and the right service to meet their needs.”

Chief Executive of Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust, Douglas Blair said:

“We are very pleased to be taking on responsibility for this service and look forward to working alongside our partners.

Supporting local people to access timely urgent care from first contact onwards is very much a shared priority across the whole One Gloucestershire integrated care system and we know how important it is to county residents.

We will work closely with NHS Gloucestershire and the current provider to support existing staff in the coming weeks with the aim of ensuring a seamless transition in late autumn.”

Additional information

The single contract for IUCS is for a period of 7 years. 5 years, plus 2 additional years at the commissioner’s (NHS Gloucestershire) discretion. The contract will start in November 2024.

Evaluation of responses to the service specification covered important areas such as service delivery, public and service user experience, quality of care, workforce, governance and finance.

The local Clinical Assessment Service (referred to above) will be accessible to patients through NHS 111 if needed.

The Primary Care (GP) Out of Hours service (also accessible through NHS 111) includes telephone advice and face to face services in hospitals and the patient’s own home where appropriate.

Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust (GHC) already provide community minor injury and illness unit services in a number of community hospitals across the county.

GHC will be working in partnership with IC24, a not for profit social enterprise organisation that runs similar services in other parts of the country. This includes initial 111 phone service call handling/triage.