Last chance for say on surgery

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Time is running out for patients to have their say on the future of the GP surgery at King Street Health Centre.

The NHS Wakefield Clinical Commissioning Group is consulting on whether to extend the GP service beyond March.

If not, the city centre practice, which is struggling to cover doctor shifts, could close down and its 3,500 patients may have to register with other surgeries.

An NHS walk-in centre housed in the same building was already under threat and could close next September.

Dr Adam Sheppard, assistant clinical chair of the CCG, said: “The engagement we are undertaking until December 30 relates to proposed changes about the GP practice and will not affect the walk-in service.

“The contract to run the surgery is time limited and is due to come to an end on March 31.

“We have been discussing with our partners, and Wakefield Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee, a number of options to either try to extend the current service, or support patients to register with one of the nine other surgeries within 1.3 miles of King Street.”

Health bosses are considering the walk-in service’s future as part of a separate review of urgent and emergency care.

Almost 2,000 people have signed a petition, launched by Wakefield MP Mary Creagh who said she would fight “tooth and nail” to save King Street Health Centre.

Ms Creagh said: “Wakefield CCG are consulting on the GP services at King Street, which will put the future of the walk-in centre at risk, as it shares the same building, facilities and staff. Walk-in centres are vital for people not registered with GPs and those seeking after-hours and weekend care.”

Registered patients have been sent letters detailing how to take part in the GP consultation.