Views wanted on proposed merger of Weston GP surgeries

PUBLISHED: 17:00 04 February 2019 | UPDATED: 07:52 05 February 2019

Clarence Park Surgery. Picture: Google

Clarence Park Surgery. Picture: Google

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People are being given the chance to have their say on the proposed merger of two GP surgeries in Weston-super-Mare.

GPs at Graham Road and Clarence Park surgeries are considering merging to improve service provision.

Patients and residents can have their say on the plans at two public engagement events.

Mark Graham, chief executive for Locality Health Centre CIC Group which runs the surgeries, said: “We are committed to ensuring the best clinical care for our patients, and this includes making sure patients are fully involved in our decision making.

“The two practices already work closely together and these proposals set out a logical next step that could see some or all services moving from Clarence Park to Graham Road as part of our plans to enhance services and ensure the future sustainability of both practices.

“I hope people will take the opportunity to read the proposals, come along to one of our events and share their views.”

Clarence Park Surgery is less than a mile from the Graham Road practice and serves just under 5,000 patients, with a high proportion of elderly people.

The viability of GP practices with fewer than 5,000 patients is widely questioned as they do not generate enough income to provide a full clinical mix.

Both practices primarily serve the town centre and seafront area and both were struggling to recruit and retain GPs when they were taken over by the Locality Health Centre.

The proposal would see the surgeries combine to serve around 14,000 patients to offer ‘greater service resilience and sustainability’.

GPs believe this would enable the best use of clinical skills, a better range of services and more efficiency in staffing.

The options being considered include merging the two practices and operating all services from Graham Road, or merging and operating Clarence Park as a branch site.

A public engagement event will take place tomorrow (Tuesday) at Clarence Park Baptist Church, in Walliscote Road, from 12.30-2.30pm and 6.30-8.30pm.

A second consultation will follow at the church on March 19, at the same times.

People can submit their views either by writing to the practices or emailing bnssg.cpandgryoursay@nhs.net

Details on the options and how to provide feedback are available at www.grahamroadsurgery.nhs.uk/going-forward-together and www.clarenceparksurgery.nhs.uk/going-forward-together

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