Thousands affected by GP practice closure

Health chiefs have reassured 7,500 patients of a Littlehampton surgery which is to close at the end of October that they will do everything possible to ensure their care continues.

Thursday, 14th July 2016, 11:55 am
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 5:28 pm
The Enterprise Hub in Wick is still due to get a medical facility

Arun Medical Group, with surgeries at East Street, Littlehampton, and East Preston, gave notice on June 30 to the NHS Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to end its contract to provide GP services.

The East Preston branch surgery closed at the end of May and will not be reopening. At the time, the practice blamed problems in recruiting new GPs. Patients unable to register at another surgery will be helped by NHS England’s Allocations Team.

Dr David Whitehead, clinical director for the CCG, said: “Patients’ safety, and ensuring that they receive the care and treatment they need, is our top priority.

“We have written to all 7,500 patients of Arun Medical Group this week and have invited them to give feedback about the arrangements for their future care. I want to reassure patients that we are working extremely hard to secure their high quality care.”

The CCG is working with practices to re-register patients with a new GP.

Dr Tim Kimber a GP at Park Surgery, Littlehampton said: “It is really sad and worrying that Arun Medical Group has had to give notice. It highlights the major issues that primary care and general practice is facing, not just nationally but right here on our doorstep.

“This will add more pressure to the other GP practices within the Arun locality but we are already working together to find a collaborate solution and are committed to working with the Coastal West Sussex CCG to get the best outcome for patients and our community.”

The CCG said patients did not need to take any action at this point and could continue to receive care from Arun Medical Group. Patients would be updated as soon as new care arrangements were confirmed.

Despite the closure of Arun Medical Group, the CCG has secured an agreement with Morrisons for medical facilities on its site, with planning approval from Arun, and was determined to make this a reality.

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