Urgent Care Cambridgeshire (UCC) provides the out of hours service within Cambridgeshire, we are not an emergency service so if you believe your condition could be a medical emergency, you should call 999 immediately. This could be such medical emergencies as–
- Heavy Bleeding
- Suspect Stroke
- Suspect Heart Attack
- Servere Breathing Difficulties
- Serious Accidents
- Crushing Chest Pain
- Anything else you believe is an immediate life threatening condition
How do I contact UCC?
UCC is a telephone contact service, which means we need you to contact us by telephone, this can be done by either phoning your GP Surgery and the phone number for UCC will be on the answering machine or your call may be put through directly to UCC.
Alternatively, you can contact us directly on our Patient Line Number –
0330 123 9131
When should I contact UCC?
You should contact UCC if you (or a member of your family) are ill at night, at the weekend or on bank holidays and cannot wait until your own GP surgery next opens. UCC cannot treat injuries such as cuts, abrasions or broken bones. Minor cuts may be dealt with in a Minor Injury Unit; however any serious accidents or injuries should be treated in an Accident and Emergency Department.
What happens when I contact UCC?
Your initial call to us will be answered by a highly trained call handler. They will ask you for a return telephone number, collect your personal details, and then ask you for some details on why you are calling.
You will then get a call back from our local GP or Nurse about your health issue who will decide the best method of care for you. This may be involve giving you self care telephone advice, inviting you in for a face to face consultation at one of our Primary Care Centres, and in some cases sending a GP to visit you at your residence.
All details of your contact with UCC will generally be passed back to your registered GP by next day.
What will happen when I am phoned back by UCC?
All calls will be returned as soon as possible, ideally within one hour. The clinician will deal with the most urgent first so for non-urgent cases there may be a little wait.
The clinician will do one of the following actions –
- Self Care Advice - The clinician may be able to advise you on a course of action that you can take yourself, with for example, over the counter medicines. They may on occasion prescribe a medicine for which you require a prescription. The prescription can be collected from one of our Primary Care Centres, and taken to a pharmacy for dispensing, or asking you to contact your normal GP Surgery when it is next open.
- Face to Face Consultation - The clinician may recommend you come in to see them face to face. This will be at one of our five Primary Care Centres and allows, when necessary, a more detailed consultation to take place. In some instances this means routine tests can be completed, such as analysis of a urine sample, or you may be advised to go directly to an Accident and Emergency Department or Minor Injuries Unit.
- Home Visit - If you are extremely unwell, or it is difficult for you to travel to a Primary Care Centre because of mobility issues, you may be offered a Home Visit. If you are offered a Home Visit, a clinician will come and visit you at your residence.
- Other - You may be redirected to a more appropriate service e.g. 999, nurse, mental health professional, social worker etc
If the patient gets worse is it very important that you phone back and let us know.
All of our calls are recorded for training and monitoring purposes.
How long will it take?
UCC delivers patient care in line with the National Quality Standards for out of hours services, as set by the Department of Health. Within the standards are a set of time frames for returning contact, clinical assessment and treatment that ensure those in greatest need are seen soonest.
In general, you can expect a call back from a clinical member of staff within one hour, and at the end of that call you will be given clear guidance on any further action needed and home long it should take.
We aim to see the majority of our home visits within three hours of the home visit decision being made.
Are doctors obliged to make house calls as part of their NHS contract?
A clinician has never been obliged to make house calls. The family doctor's contract states that in the case of an emergency the doctor must offer a consultation but it is up to the doctor to decide where the consultation takes place. When you are fit to travel, a properly equipped medical centre is always a better place to deal with your illness.
What if I need medication?
If you need any medication immediately you will be given a prescription to take to a local pharmacy. However, in emergencies you may be given medication in a Treatment Centre that will cover you until the pharmacy is next open.
If you run out of medication when the surgery is closed, please always contact your usual pharmacist who will advise you and may be able to issue the medicine you require.
...is an expert on medicines and is qualified to give advice on common complaints, such as coughs, colds, flu, sore throats aches and pains.
...if you need the ‘morning after pill’, you will find that many pharmacies sell this over the counter after a consultation with the pharmacist. Some can provide it on the NHS.
For minor ailments such as hay fever, cold, sort throats etc it is possible to go direct to a pharmacy without an appointment.
Minor Ailments Service
For minor ailments such as cold, hay fever, sore throats etc it is possible to go straight to a pharmacist, without an appointment, for advice and to receive a medicine if required. Look for pharmacies with the logo below.
When is it out of hours?
In general, it is out of hours when your GP surgery is closed. We are open between 6.30pm at night and 8.00am the following morning during the week, and 24 hours a day at weekends and Bank Holidays.