A North East Covid clinic which was set up to provide care for people while minimising the risk of transmission to others has been praised by a watchdog.

Lawson Street Health Centre, run by Hartlepool and Stockton Health Limited, was rated outstanding by the Care Quality Commisison (CQC).

The clinic was set up in 2020 to provide face-to-face healthcare appointments for patients who had either tested positive or had Covid symptoms and was aimed at providing treatment for those people while minimising transmission and separating them from other people seeking healthcare.

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The clinic, which is in Stockton, also provides a ‘Oximetry@home’ service, which supports people at home who have been diagnosed with Covid and are most at risk of becoming seriously unwell.

The service had been one of the first of four areas to participate in the pilot, which was then rolled out nationally.

Beverley Cole, CQC head of primary medical services, said: “We were extremely impressed by how well organised the service was. All staff were appropriately qualified, and the provider understood staff’s learning needs and how to provide them with ongoing support.

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“We saw patients were able to access care and treatment within an appropriate timescale that met their needs. Additionally, staff treated people with compassion, kindness, dignity and respect.

“The whole team deserve to be congratulated for all their hard work and commitment.”

CQC inspectors found:

  • Leaders worked in partnership and developed relationships across other organisations to ensure services were joined up and there were open discussions on how to work well together to meet the needs of the local community
  • The service had good systems to manage risk so that safety incidents were less likely to happen. When they did happen, the service learned from them and improved their processes.
  • The organisation routinely reviewed the effectiveness and appropriateness of the care they provided. They ensured that care and treatment was delivered according to evidence- based guidelines.
  • There was a strong focus on continuous learning and improvement at all levels of the organisation.

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