June 19 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Patients registered with a GP surgery could be expected to travel further for appointments when its opening hours are reduced.
From April 1, Newton Flotman Surgery, on St Mary’s Close, intends to open on weekday mornings only, closing at 1pm each day. From September 1, it will open only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings.
In its spring newsletter, the practice, which is part of the Long Stratton Medical Partnership, said it would centralise services at Long Stratton in a bid to improve the continuity of care and increase the availability of appointments.
Fears have been raised by the Newton Flotman Patient Practice Group (PPG), however, which scheduled a meeting to discuss the proposals with patients the practice manager and doctors last night.
Chairman Jean Wilson said: “One of the reasons this really gets to me is that we’re a mixed village and we have a fair bit of social housing and it means we’ve got a number of young mums and older people who have no transport.
“Newton Flotman Surgery is on a main bus route and Long Stratton is about half a mile from the bus route, so it’s very difficult.
“The other thing we can’t understand is that we have a fully-functioning building with a profitable dispensary and a car park and seven doctors and we’re being told this is all for improvements in service.”
The practice declined to comment when approached by the Evening News, but said in its newsletter: “This is a time of great change, not only at Long Stratton Medical Partnership, but within the NHS as a whole and we feel that the changes we are putting in place will help ensure that at least some access to a GP is retained at Newton Flotman, at the same time as providing a more comprehensive service at the Swan Lane Surgery.”
Police are investigating the death of a woman whose body was found in a garden pond today.
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