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Microbiology tests and services to be centralised at St George’s Hospital

The majority of South West London Pathology (SWLP) microbiology services for south west London and Surrey Heartlands are being centralised at St George’s Hospital to create a large and resilient microbiology service for primary and acute care in the area. This change will affect Epsom and St Helier hospitals and Sutton and Surrey Heartlands GPs.

The centralisation of the majority of microbiology services is taking place on Monday 26 June and on that date, all microbiology staff working at St Helier Hospital will move to St George’s Hospital.

Blood culture testing will remain on site at Epsom and St Helier Hospitals.

Following the move of services, microbiology tests can be ordered in the usual way. Clinical advice can also be accessed in the usual way.

However, contact details for the laboratory and the microbiology out of hours service will change. The new numbers are:

Results:020 8725 5468
Laboratory queries and urgent requests:020 8725 5693
Out of hours (via switchboard):020 8672 1255

Transport of samples between Epsom and St Helier Hospitals and St George’s Hospital

Microbiology samples from St Helier and Epsom hospitals will be transported to St George’s Hospital by courier.

The sample pick-up times from Epsom Hospital and St Helier Hospital to St George’s Hospital are below:

Epsom Hospital
Standard hoursTransport mode
09:00Van
11:30Van
13:30Van
15:30Van
18:00Van
20:00Van
23:00Bike
Weekends and Bank Holidays
09:00Bike
13:00Bike
17:00Bike
St Helier Hospital
Standard hoursTransport mode
09:00Van
10:30Van
13:00Van
16:00Van
18:30Van
20:30Van
23:30Bike
Weekends and Bank Holidays
09:00Bike
13:00Bike
17:00Bike

Change in presentation of microbiology reports for GPs

The results reports GPs receive for some microbiology tests will change. Further information and sample reports will be shared in the next week. GPs should ensure they familiarise themselves with the new format of the reports to ensure that they can access all of the information provided.

Why are services moving?

This consolidation is being undertaken in order to create a more robust microbiology service for all service users. SWLP is investing in state-of-the-art technology to future-proof its microbiology services. They will also be investing in people through training and staff development.

The result will be one of the largest and most comprehensive microbiology services in the country with the ability to offer an ever-increasing repertoire.

This move is part of a programme of work to consolidate pathology services across south west London, following the expansion of the SWLP partnership to include Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals.

Webinar

To support users through the move, SWLP is running a webinar which will:

  • give some background on why the services are being consolidated
  • set out times lines
  • outline any changes to tests and processes
  • give an opportunity to ask questions.

The webinar will take place on Monday 19 June between 10.30am and 12pm.

Join the webinar

The webinar will be recorded, and the recording will be made available. A Q&A document will also be shared.

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