A new Integrated Urgent Care service (IUC) across Hertfordshire was launched by Herts Urgent Care (HUC) on Thursday 29th June 2017, commissioned by East & North Herts and Herts Valleys CCG. HUC have been providing GP Out of Hours services to the county since 2008 and the NHS111 service has been introduced in 2012, which has been well received by patients. The new IUC service gives patients direct access to a wider variety of healthcare professionals. HUC, a Social Enterprise, already successfully runs integrated urgent care services throughout Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, and Luton and Bedfordshire.

Integrated Urgent Care creates a simple patient journey, making NHS111 the call to make. NHS111 is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobile phones.

The new enhanced service means that by phoning NHS111, a patient has access to a wide range of healthcare professionals based at the Hertfordshire Contact Centre, including GPs, dentists, prescribing pharmacists and mental health professionals.

Depending on the required level of care, a patient could be given some self-care advice by a Health Advisor supported by a Clinical Advisor or be put through to a GP or nurse for an over the phone consultation. Health Advisors are also able to directly book out of hours appointments for patients.

One patient commented: “Superb care. I had an appointment made for me via 111 – and all my information was already on file as I arrived. The GP was excellent – helpful, informative and medication prescribed. All I needed and all done efficiently and very pleasantly. Top marks!”

 David Archer, HUC CEO, said: “The Integrated Urgent Care model championed by HUC has been providing patients with a high level of care across two counties over the past year, and now we are proud to be extending the successful integrated care model into Hertfordshire to create a much easier and efficient experience for patients.”