Dundee’s new NHS 24 call centre is expected to launch within weeks after a major recruitment drive to hire 300 staff.
The NHS 24 Regional Centre will be based at Caledonia House on Greenmarket and is one of several to be set up across Scotland.
The finishing touches are being made to the building to allow staff to move in before Christmas.
NHS 24 staff recruitment ‘ongoing’
Jobs still being advertised include vacancies for mental health nurses and a psychological wellbeing practitioner.
John Gebbie, director of finance at NHS 24, said: “We look forward to launching our new centre at Caledonian House in Dundee.
“Reconfiguration works within the building are underway and progressing well to bring the centre into alignment with our other NHS 24 sites in terms of specification and design.
“Staff recruitment continues with interviews starting this week for a range of posts including call handlers, senior charge nurses and clinical services managers.
NHS 24 is bringing over 300 new job opportunities in and around Dundee.
As part of a planned expansion of services, NHS 24 is launching a new contact centre in Dundee City Centre later this autumn.
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“The tremendous pace the team have been working at getting our new centre ready, combined with wide scale recruitment and comprehensive training programmes, has kept us on track to begin to welcome staff into Caledonian House by Christmas 2021.”
NHS 24 currently employs more than 2,000 staff who work across 13 Scotland-based centres.
It provides people with urgent care advice for free at the point of access.
As well as a phone service, staff also engage with people online through social media and web chat.
Service used to tackle A&E waiting times
The centre is part of a £20 million Scottish Government investment in NHS 24 this year.
The service has had to deal with a huge uptick in demand since the pandemic began as patients have been either unable or unwilling to visit healthcare settings as often.
It has essentially moved from a predominantly out-of-hours service to one that is delivering 24/7 advice.
The 111 number is suitable for patients looking for advice when other services are unavailable or those who may need to visit A&E but who do not have a life-threatening condition.
The expansion of the service is expected to help cut the numbers of people in A&E departments as waiting times reach record levels.
And it comes as the Scottish Government has issued new guidance on how to further tackle A&E pressures.
The plan centres on making sure patients who present at emergency departments with minor illness or injury are assessed early by a senior doctor or nurse before being directed away from A&E to the most appropriate service.
It is a system NHS Tayside has had in place for more than 20 years and has helped make Ninewells Hospital A&E one of the best performing in Scotland.