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Private company to take over family-run GP practice in APMS contract

Private company to take over family-run GP practice in APMS contract

A Leicester-based private firm have won a new APMS contract for an Essex GP practice, which was historically family-run, following the death of its GP partner. 

Dr Paul Moss ran North Shoebury Surgery for many years before he passed in June 2021, at which point his two colleagues became partners. 

However last month the ICB announced that Spirit Health had won the APMS contract for North Shoebury plus five other practices in the area, following a re-tender process starting in October 2022.

Dr Moss, who qualified as a GP in 1979, ran the surgery with his father as practice manager and his mother managing reception, according to the website. 

Following his death, advanced care practitioner Tabitha Love, who was the clinical lead, and Dr Haroon Siddique were granted a fixed term GMS contract as a partnership. 

Spirit Health will take over North Shoebury, along with Oddfellows and St Clements, Tilbury, Thurrock and Commonwealth practices on 1st April 2023, as well as Purfleet Care Centre on 1st July. 

Mid and South Essex ICB said the award, worth over £91 million, was given for a 15-year period to ‘give greater certainty for the provider to improve value for money, ability to recruit, willingness to invest time and resources’.

North Shoebury’s announcement on the website said that during his many years running the surgery Dr Moss ‘became well known in the area’. 

It added: ‘All that grew to know Dr Moss commented how humble he was, along with a wealth of knowledge and always willing to help friends and patients.’

While the surgery assured patients that the handover to Spirit Health will not affect the GP services provided, it highlighted the positive impact Ms Love and Dr Siddique had during their time as partners. 

The announcement said: ‘Since the new partnership [between Ms Love and Dr Siddique] was established, the surgery has continued to develop and offer services that were not available prior, and has gone from strength to strength.  

‘We have listened to our patients in regards to their needs, for example, we have recently installed a cloud based phone system.’ 

Dr Ronan Fenton, system medical director for Mid and South Essex ICB, said: ‘A comprehensive procurement process has been undertaken to secure a new provider for a number of Alternative Primary Medical Care Services (APMS) contracts for the delivery of GP-led services.

‘A thorough evaluation process involved representatives from primary care, the local alliances, quality, finance and digital teams as well as Healthwatch.’    

On the Spirit Health take-over, he added: ‘We are committed to supporting our staff and patients through this transition with the new provider running engagement sessions in the coming weeks offering registered patients a chance to ask questions and provide reassurance that services will not change.

‘With the majority of staff and patient records transferring, care will continue through this period.’

Spirit Health currently runs seven other GP practices, all based in Leicester or the Midlands area, according to its website. 

Pulse contacted the company for comment.

This comes as Lancashire and South Cumbria ICB has agreed to re-run a procurement process for a GP practice contract after hundreds of patients and staff complained about its decision to award a private company with the APMS contract.



Please note, only GPs are permitted to add comments to articles

Sarah Willson 24 February, 2023 9:47 pm

Disgrace, it’s over.

paul cundy 25 February, 2023 11:53 am

Dear All,
Those figures are a bit opaque. £91 million over 15 yrs for how many patients? Fixed prices, performance criteria> etc etc
Paul C

Anonymous 28 February, 2023 6:34 am

Family run practice failed to plan for the future. And now two years after the passing of the previous partner, new entity wants to take over.

Well get ready for it people, it is going to be the future for many single handed practices.

David Church 1 March, 2023 3:22 pm

it is not so much that the Practice ‘failed to plan’, as that you cannot plan for a sudden unexpected death of the doctor in a single-handed practice : the system will not let you make a suitable arrangement without it going to a private company’s APMS for preference! It is inbuilt these days in how DHSE works