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Coffins, petitions and placards: Patients turn out to support ‘worst funded’ GP practice in the country

Hundreds of patients turned out to demonstrate in support of a single-handed GP who claims his practice is the worst funded in the country.

Dr John Cormack has run the Greenwood practice in Chelmsford, Essex for 30 years and says that the PCT are refusing to fund the practice fairly.

Dr Cormack told Pulse: ‘We believe, on the basis of pretty good evidence, that this is the worst funded practice in the entire NHS.'

‘It goes without saying that this puts a question mark over the future of the surgery – at present, having exceeded our £25,000 overdraft we have had to ask the bank to increase it to £30,000 … and far from being able to draw a salary last month and the month before I've had to pay in a four figure sum in order that we stay solvent and the staff are paid.'

As a result Dr Cormack organized a demonstration of support where about 300 patients turned out.

In response, chief executive of NHS North Essex Sheila Bremner, said: ‘The PCT has regularly answered Dr Cormack's queries about the funding for his practice over recent years.'

‘We have gone to some lengths to explain that the practice is receiving the allocation to which it is legally entitled.'

‘We have in the past funded an independent practice manager to support the practice in completing a business review to make sure that the practice is receiving the correct reimbursement for all its services and to identify where there may be opportunities to secure other income.'