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CCG consulting on which of three GP practices to close

At least one GP practice is to shut down under CCG plans currently out for public consultation in Hartlepool.

NHS Hartlepool and Stockton CCG is consulting on the future of the APMS contracts for Fens Medical Centre, Hartfields Medical Centre and Wynyard Road Primary Care Centre, which are all due to end on 31 March 2017 following a number of short-term extensions.

The options being consulted upon include having one provider at either one or two sites, meaning at least one of the three centres would close its doors to patients.

Currently, Gatehouse Limited holds the contract for the Fens Medical Centre, while IntraHealth Limited provides the services at the other two sites.

The CCG is now formally consulting on three options based on criteria including affordability to the CCG and providers; fitting with the CCG’s strategy; whether it increases sustainability of services; and suitability of premises.

It also said it had ‘taken into account what is most important to patients from this feedback, including keeping services local to patients, preferred opening times and quality of care’ in a survey of 2,596 people carried out in June this year.

The options are:

  • Option 1: One provider at two sites – Fens and Wynyard Road
  • Option 2: One provider at two sites – Hartfields and Wynyard Road
  • Option 3: One provider at one site – Wynyard Road

Ali Wilson, chief officer of NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees CCG, said that the CCG ‘wants to understand the views of as many patients as possible; and will then develop plans for services which continue to meet local need and are sustainable for the future’.

She added: ‘We have already received a significant amount of interest from patients in how these services are delivered at the three practices…

‘Throughout the consultation, we want to reassure patients that there will be no change to the range of services they receive at their practice.’

The consultation is open for eight weeks from 5 August.