Community Diagnostic Centre opens at Ripon Community Hospital

A new Community Diagnostic Centre (CDC) has opened at Ripon Community Hospital providing local residents with faster access to checks, scans and tests for a wide range of health conditions.

The £1 million centre, which has the capacity to deliver more than 27,000 checks a year, will enable Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust (HDFT), to offer more appointments for tests, reduce waiting times and make it easier for the local community to access diagnostic services closer to home.

The CDC offers checks, scans and tests to people who have been referred by their GP for conditions including musculoskeletal problems, lung conditions, cardiovascular conditions and hearing issues.

Services include ultrasound, echocardiography, audiology, blood tests, ambulatory blood pressure monitor fitting, electrocardiogram (ECG), spirometry (breathing/lung function test) and FENO (test for asthma and other lung conditions) – a number of which have not been available at Ripon Community Hospital before.

Later in May, a new state-of-the-art x-ray room will be opened within the CDC using the latest cutting-edge diagnostic imaging technology. The new technology will capture and processed images faster than current equipment, which will help reduce waiting times for the service.

Located on the ground floor of Ripon Community Hospital, the CDC will initially be open five days a week from 8am to 6pm, with plans to expand to seven days a week by the end of 2024. The x-ray service once opened will be available seven days a week.

Matt Graham, Director of Strategy at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust said: “Our new Community Diagnostic Centre will be a huge benefit for the people of Ripon and the surrounding area.

“It is a significant step forward in improving the range of diagnostic tests available in Ripon and it is helping us improve access to healthcare for our rural population. People now have the opportunity to have tests completed on their doorstep rather than having to travel further afield.

“We are focussed on reducing waiting times for patients and the introduction of cutting edge technology, and greater clinical space for checks, scans and tests will lead to an increase in the number of people that can be seen each day.

“As a Trust we are committed to improving the health and wellbeing of our patients, children and communities and the opening of the CDC is testament this.

“I would like to thank everyone involved in this project. We have been working closely with GPs in Ripon since the start of the project so that we can streamline access to our Community Diagnostic Centre for those people who need it.”

Wendy Balmain, NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board (ICB) Director for North Yorkshire, said: “This is fantastic news for people living in Ripon and surrounding area and will mean they will have convenient access to a wide range of diagnostic tests.

“Across Humber and North Yorkshire, Community Diagnostic schemes represent an £80 million investment and – once fully up and running – will mean there’s additional capacity for hundreds of thousands of additional tests, checks and scans a year.

“It’s a revolution in the way patients access diagnostic services and will speed up the detection of many serious illnesses, meaning patients can start their treatment and recovery much sooner.”