The surgery was formerly open for limited hours a few times a week, with a small number of clinics available. Now, the practice has applied to close the branch on a permanent basis.
All patients are routinely registered with the group’s Port Isaac surgery, so will see no change in this respect. Many of them also choose to attend the practice’s Bridge Medical Centre surgery in nearby Wadebridge. This means patients will continue to receive support for their health and care in the way that they have been.
Ahead of the proposed formal closure, the practice is to run a month-long patient engagement programme to gather the views of its community. This will include a public meeting and a patient survey, as well as the option to email or write to the practice.
The public meeting is being held on Friday 1 July at 6.30pm at the Community Hall, St Kew Highway, Bodmin PL30 3ER. GP partners and fellow practice staff will be on hand to answer people’s questions.
The patient survey will run online from 2 July until 1 August. There will be a link to access it via the Port Isaac Practice website. For those who prefer, paper copies will be available in the same time period from both the Port Isaac and Wadebridge surgeries, and at the public meeting.
Patients, and their families and carers, who will be affected by the permanent closure are encouraged to get in touch if they have any concerns about the proposal.
Beth McCarron, GP partner at Port Isaac Practice says “The St Kew surgery has been closed for some time now, and our hope is that this has caused minimum inconvenience to our patients.
“Ultimately, the building is not fit for the purpose of running a modern medical practice. This results in a frustrating, and unsafe, experience for both patients and staff.”
The practice had originally hoped to be able to re-open the branch surgery, if it could put in place improvements to minimise the safety risk to staff and patients. Following reassessment of the site, it reached the conclusion that a number of important and unresolvable issues make this unachievable.
Says Dr McCarron “This is not a decision we have taken lightly, and I’d like to reassure our St Kew patients that we have carefully considered the options.
“The cramped layout at the site creates issues with infection control. Access is poor, with no parking, and the IT system is very unstable. We simply don’t have the staff or infrastructure to safely run the branch surgery.
“By contrast, at our 2 nearby surgeries we are able to provide a far superior experience. Each has a range of specialist staff and services that can accommodate a breadth of healthcare needs.
“Our patients will see no change to the way we have been operating, and no action is required from them. We offer the choice of attending either surgery, where we look forward to continuing to provide high standards of clinical practice in a fitting environment.”