GP surgery to close its doors

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A Ripley medical centre is set to close its doors after concerns over workload and running costs.

Patients of the Jessop Medical Practice were notified by letter last week about the ‘inevitable closure’ of the Steeple Drive site.

The main practice site at Leabrooks will remain open and Ripley patients will be transferred over and can continue to use the services at the Leabrooks practice.

Senior partner at Jessop Medical Practice Dr Joanna Blyth, said: “A letter has been sent to our patients, which explains we’re considering closing the branch surgery at Ripley. We’re asking patients to let us know what impact this would have on them, because their care is our priority.

“We contacted NHS Southern Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group to request permission to consider this, as we want to make sure we’re offering our services in the best way. Running two sites creates difficulties in offering patients’ continuity of care and creates additional costs. By consolidating our practice at our main Leabrooks site we feel we could offer a better and safer service now, and be in a better position in future to develop a greater range of services for our patients.

“We are happy and able to continue looking after all the people registered with us, at our Leabrooks site. There will be no reduction in the number of appointments we offer, so we hope those patients who have previously visited our staff in Ripley will continue to see them at our Leabrooks surgery.

“But if they should wish to remain with a Ripley practice, if we continue with our proposal, colleagues at Ivy Grove Surgery and Ripley Medical Centre are aware of what we are considering and some patients may wish to register with them.”

A spokesman for NHS Southern Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group, added: “We received a request from the practice for them to consider closing a branch surgery and we’re working with them to offer support as they talk to their patients about their proposal.

“We’re also working with other local GP practices in Ripley so they can be prepared if any patients should wish to remain with an alternative practice in the town.”

Local councillors Steve Freeborn and David Williams voiced their concern over the closure. In a joint statement they said: “We are dismayed at the closure and consider it as just another example of the effect of the continuing government cuts forced on to NHS services through Clinical Commissioning Groups.

“Yet again, public services in Ripley are bearing the brunt of the Conservative government’s cuts.”

Patients invited to have their say at www.surveymonkey.co.uk/JessopMedical.