Publish date: 29 July 2022

A new Community Diagnostic Centre at Victoria Infirmary in Northwich has been officially opened, providing easier access to a range of vital services for thousands of patients.    

The £1.7 million facility is managed by the Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and is already having a significant impact. Since the phased introduction of services last October, an additional 12,000 tests have been carried out as part of the Community Diagnostic Centre (CDC) programme.

A network of CDCs is being opened across the country, providing patients with quick and easy access to diagnostic tests, such as X-rays, CT scans, ultrasound, and blood tests, all in one place. 

1st Patient in VIN scanner.JPG76-year-old Kenneth Evans from Winsford in Cheshire (pictured) became the first of more than 250 patients to experience the newly installed CT scanner in a new modular building, on the site of Victoria Infirmary’s former casualty unit.  There are plans for the scanner to see an additional 5,000 patients tested through it alone this year.

Russ Favager, Interim Chief Executive at the Mid Cheshire Trust, said: “Given the enormous pressure on accident and emergency services right now, including at Leighton Hospital, it’s vital that we offer services that serve our patients better, are convenient and in accessible locations and relieve some of the burden on our Leighton site.  We have had hugely positive feedback from patients using the CDC, and we are looking forward to expanding our portfolio of services in the coming months.”  

Karen Bowman, General Manager at VIN, added: “We have increased the operating hours of our expanded cardio-respiratory services, including a new drive-through unit, as part of our long-term strategy to better meet the needs of patients in our communities.  A recruitment programme is underway to support our aim for seven-day-a-week services across the board.”     

Victoria Infirmary joins a growing number of CDCs across the North West, which have so far accomplished nearly 225,000 tests. The North West region is ranked second in the country in terms of activity to date.

Dr Liz Bishop, Senior Responsible Officer for the Cheshire and Merseyside Cancer Alliance said: “CDCs are increasing capacity and improving access for patients in our region. Their ability to provide a one-stop-shop approach, completing multiple tests at the same time, means we can achieve a diagnosis sooner and improve patient access and experience.”