Story by Richard Belbin
Pitsmoor Surgery, on Burngreave Road, has announced a proposal to merge with the Flowers Health Centre, on Wincobank Avenue, as a part of an NHS England plan that wants to see GP services offered by bigger practices, covering at least 30,000 patients.
The plan hopes to see a bigger workforce, with a wider range of services and support available to patients. Physiotherapy assessments have been put forward as the first addition. A physio would be available to assess aches and pains that a GP would normally send through to the hospital service. By being a larger organisation, the partnership hopes to be able to streamline administrative support services, and to be a more attractive employer in a ‘competitive market.’ Both practices will remain open, working the same way as they do now. Patients will see the same clinical staff, in the same place. No staff member will lose their job. The surgery is consulting with patients and interested groups, and is holding a public meeting as the Messenger goes to print. Various concerns have been raised already – will such a large practise will become unwieldy? How can the promise that patients won’t have to travel be made, when the NHS is facing such constant re-organisation? If the process doesn’t work, could the merger be reversed?
A survey on the merger can be found in the surgery waiting room, or at https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/C9KZGBC