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Independents' Day

Another 9,000-patient GP practice to close in March

A shortage of GPs has forced a practice in Dorset to close after it was unable to find replacements for retiring doctors.

The Abbotsbury Road Surgery in Weymouth announced last month that it will hand back its contract at the end of March next year.

GP partners at the two-site practice said an ageing workforce and national shortage of GPs means that it has been unable to recruit enough new GPs to keep the practice running.

They added: ‘We have therefore concluded that it is unsafe to continue to try to provide general medical services for our populations of 9,000 patients with a skeleton clinical staff without risking the health and safety of our patients and out staff.’

NHS Dorset CCG said GPs in Weymouth and Portland are working together to develop plans to keep primary care services functional.

Dr Karen Kirkham, the CCG's clinical chair for the locality, said: 'The partners at Abbotsbury Road Surgery have made the difficult decision to hand back their contract at the end of March 2019.'

She added that the staff from the Abbotsbury Road Surgery and the Chickerell branch would 'be supported by the CCG and local practices', suggesting they would continue to work in local general practice.

She said: 'All of our primary care staff, clinical and non-clinical, are a hugely valuable resource, and the team at the practice will have a crucial role to play in the continuation of local services.

'We have a great track record for working together across the Weymouth and Portland locality, and we will continue to provide the high quality general practice that has always been at the heart of all that we do.'

The news comes as Pulse reported earlier this week that over 40,000 patients could lose their GP amid upcoming practice closures in Wales, Durham, London and Northern Ireland.

Readers' comments (3)

  • National Hopeless Service

    This reminds me of that Monty Python sketch "what did the Romans ever do for us" but in total reverse.

    What did the Conservatives ever do for us; well they buggered up the NHS, they buggered up Brexit, they buggered up Universal Credit......

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  • Let me guess, as a false reassurance on patient safety and to show that the powers to be are doing their job and justifying it, more rules are going to come out to force us to merge and work in "innovative" new ways. Stricter rules to struck us off and send us to jail for missing a script or if someone misses an appointment. That will really help-NOT.

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  • Don't worry 3:55, the wise public will still vote Tories in the next election. Blind allegiance wins over common sense - having been thrashed black and blue in the first 5 yr term, we did elect them for a 2nd term - and now we have a rollicking brexit, uncertainty and utter chaos esp in NHS.

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