The affected practices meet the needs of around 9,500 people.
Calderdale patients registered with four GP practices will be registered with alternative practices following a decision taken to close them – but one, in Todmorden, will remain open.
The NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group’s (CCG) Commissioning Primary Medical Services Committee met last week to consider the findings of its consultation into the future of Alternative Primary Medical Services (APMS) contracts in Calderdale.
CCG chair Dr Steven Cleasby said that after careful consideration the group had decided that the Meadow Dale Group Practice at Sowerby Bridge, Ovenden and Elland sites, currently operated by Virgin Care LLP will close, as will the Park and Calder Community Practice site at in Halifax town centre which currently operated by Locala CIC.
But having considered the clear feedback from public and Calderdale Council’s Adults, Health and Social Care Scrutiny Board, whose members had been very concerned about neighbouring practices’ ability to absorb more patients, the Park and Calder Community Practice site at Todmorden, currently operated by Locala CIC will remain open.
The practice shares Todmorden Health Centre with Todmorden Group Practice and some NHS services.
The group says it has reached an agreement with the existing provider, Locala, to continue to provide services in Todmorden for the next two years whilst we work towards a more sustainable, long-term solution.
The other contracts are scheduled to end in March.
Affected practices meet the needs of around 9,500 people, around 2,500 of them in the Todmorden area.
Following the decisions, Dr Cleasby said no-one would be left without a doctor.
“We appreciate that this may be a worrying time for some people, but please be assured that no one will be left without access to GP services.
“We will write again to all affected households with more information on today’s decision and where appropriate let people know which new GP practice we have registered them with.
“If anyone is unhappy with the practice we match them with, they are free to choose to register with another GP practice that serves their area.
“In the meantime everyone should continue to book and attend appointments as normal with their current GP practice,” he said.
The six week consultation ran from late October to early December last year and Dr Cleasby thanked all who had taken part and shared their thoughts through either drop-in sessions or completing a survey form.
In turn the consultation built on a pre-consultation engagement that took place in July and August last year and previous engagement about primary medical services that has taken place over the past five years.
“We really valued your feedback and by engaging with us – you have helped shape the way in which we invest our finite resources to the maximum benefit of everyone in Calderdale,” said Dr Cleasby.
Documents considered by the Adults, Health and Social Care Scrutiny Board outlined the CCG’s view that the APMS contracts were “neither sustainable nor affordable”.
In the feedback patients expressed concerns about capacity at other GP practices, about patients returning to practices where they were previously registered, the availability of appointments, travel and transport to practices further away, and about continuity of their care – and these were largely shared by board members.
The CCG is legally responsible for ensuring patients will have ongoing access to primary medical services.
APMS contracts enable commissioning groups to provide primary medical services within their area to the extent that they consider it necessary to meet all reasonable requirements.
The other routes are General Medical Services (GMS) and Personal Medical Services (PMS).