Soho Walk in Centre - Information for patients

Service Description

The Soho Walk in Centre is a valued community health service and this year, celebrates its milestone 20th anniversary. It is led by highly qualified nurses employed by CLCH,  who treat people needing medical attention, but who are not in a life-threatening situation. The staff are equipped to diagnose and treat many of the most common ailments people go to A&E for.

The lead commissioner, who funds the service, is Central London CCG. 

Fast facts

  • Open 7 days a week, 8am-8pm Monday to Friday and 10am-8pm on weekends.
  • It sees circa 50,000 patients per year, averaging 155 on weekdays and 93 at weekends  
  • Caters largely for the working population  - 18-50 year olds equate to 88% of patients
  • The average time from booking in to discharge is 1 hour and 35 mins
  • The WiC provides an invaluable service to the homeless population
  • A patient audit revealed that 63% of respondents would go to A&E if there was no WiC

NHSE requirements

Part of the ‘Next Steps on the NHS Five Year Forward View’ published by the Department of Health and Social Care in March 2017 was a priority to roll out  and standardise new ‘Urgent Treatment Centres’ (UTC’s) across the country. The Soho Walk in Centre constitutes an urgent care centre that according to NHSE guidance needs to be re-designed to meet the new standards for a UTC.

Next steps

Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust Board is in support of a model to deliver an Urgent Treatment Centre in Soho to continue to address the needs of the patients we serve. We are working with local NHS partners and have proposed this as an option to Central London CCG, who commission the service.

Central London Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has Walk in Centres (WiCs) and Urgent Care Centres (UCCs) across London, located as follows:

What do Walk in Centres and Urgent Care Centres do?

These services provide an NHS walk in treatment service for patients with acute illness and injuries. St Charles UCC, Finchley WIC and Edgware WIC also have x-ray facilities. Soho and Parsons Green Walk in Centres are Nurse Practitioner led and are unable to treat pregnant women and children under 12 years old. Phlebotomy services are not available at any of the services.

What we offer 

All of our centres can treat minor injuries and illnesses including:

  • Minor ear, nose and throat problems
    *from Monday 2 September Soho walk in centre will only provide ear irrigation to patients from Monday to Friday between 10:00 and 16:00. 
  • Sprains and strains
  • Wound infections
  • Minor burns and scalds
  • Minor head injuries
  • Skin conditions
  • Minor respiratory conditions
  • Mild abdominal pain 
  • Insect and animal bites and stings
  • Minor eye injuries
  • Minor injuries to the back, shoulder and chest

If you are not sure which service to use you can call NHS 111 for advice. 

What can I expect if I attend a Walk in Centre or Urgent Care Centre?

You do not need an appointment, just walk in. If you attend a Walk in Centre or Urgent Care Centre, on arrival at reception, you will be asked to provide some information about yourself and the reason for your visit, before being asked to wait in the waiting area.

You will be seen for an initial assessment (triage) with a clinician within 20 minutes of registration at reception. At this assessment the clinician will decide if your symptoms can be seen and treated within that centre, if not you will be advised and redirected to another appropriate health care provider. If you can be seen and treated in that centre you will be asked to wait in the waiting area until you are called for a further assessment. 

The services aim to see and treat all patients within 4 hours of arrival and patients are seen in order of clinical priority.  Waiting times can vary, during busy periods, our waiting times may be longer than expected and we ask for your patience and understanding .

Demand for services occasionally exceeds capacity after 4 pm weekdays and you may be advised that we are unable to offer you a full consultation, due to the numbers of patients waiting to be seen. At these times, all patients will receive an initial assessment and if unable to offer a full consultation will be redirected to other appropriate healthcare providers (see list below).

Other services you may wish to consider before/instead of attending a Walk in Centre or Urgent Care Centre include:

  • Your local GP – for non-urgent conditions, long-term conditions, repeat prescriptions, sick notes
  • Your local pharmacy – for advice on common problems such as coughs, colds, aches and pains, as well as healthy eating and stopping smoking. Pharmacists can also help you decide whether you need to see a health professional. Find your local pharmacy here. 
  • The NHS 111 service – for general health advice and for support when you have run out of medication and your GP or local pharmacy is not open. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and calls are free from landlines and mobile phones. Call 111 today or find out more here. 
  • Overseas visitors
  • If you are a visitor from the European Economic Area (EEA) and you have a valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) then you will be required to bring this with you.

Your behaviour 

Our staff have a right to work in a safe environment and we have a duty to maintain the health and safety of our visitors and patients.  We do not tolerate violent or aggressive behaviour.

Anyone who behaves in this way or who damages hospital property will be asked to leave.