Following closures, Karl calls for clarification on future funding and capacity of local GP Services

Karl McCartney JP MP, Member of Parliament for Lincoln, has written to the Chief Executive of Lincolnshire West Clinical Commissioning Group (LWCCG) calling for public answers on a range of concerns regarding the future of GP provision and appointment waiting times in the City. The request for answers follows the closure of two GP surgeries on Saturday 7 January 2017 forcing 5,500 patients to register elsewhere in the City, and, concerns raised by the Lincolnshire Local Medical Committee.

Following analysis of the funding and the contract terms offered to organisations to run these two GP now-closed surgeries, Karl believes there was never a realistic prospect that these surgeries would remain open. This would have been obvious to the LWCCG especially because a previous provider had been unable to run the surgeries due to financial reasons. The funding on offer (£81.68) per patient was lower than the LWCCG’s average last year (£97.40) for this type of contract.

Karl is also concerned on the ability of other GP surgeries in Lincoln to be able to accept these extra patients onto their roll without having a knock-on effect of increasing average waiting times across the City. This is due to an insufficient additional funding being made available and space restraints. The LWCCG has said that it cannot make a guarantee that appointment waiting times across the City will not rise which Karl believes is unacceptable especially given the need to actually increase GP capacity in the City. He has called for clarity on the future funding and capacity of GP services in Lincoln.

Karl McCartney JP MP, Lincoln’s Member of Parliament, said: “Given the funding they made available and the views of local GP’s, I am not convinced that the Clinical Commissioning Group were ever serious about wanting to keep these two vital surgeries open.

“I am gravely concerned about the knock-on effect these closures will have, not just on those patients who have had to move but also on average GP waiting times across the City as existing surgeries have to add these patients to their current roll. They have said they cannot give me the reassurances I have sought 'at the present time' and I fear they never will. This is not acceptable especially given the growing City I represent needs more GP surgeries not fewer.

“Local patients, taxpayers and the local health sector deserve better. It is vital that the Clinical Commissioning Group are reminded they are accountable to the people of Lincoln so I am looking forward to them publicly answering the searching questions that I have posed.”

Karl is due to the meet the Chief Executive of the LWCCG in the coming weeks.

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For further information, please contact Karl McCartney JP MP at karl.mccartney.mp@parliament.uk / 020 7219 7221.