Call for change in management at two troubled GP practices

CREDIT: This story was first seen in The Basingstoke Gazette

The Basingstoke Gazette reports that residents and a senior councillor have aired their concerns with issues at the Rooksdown Practice, in Park Prewett Road, after reports of long waits for appointments, staff resignations and staffing issues,

This comes after months of issues at the Beggarword Surgery in Broadmere Road, which has been extensively reported in The Basingstoke Gazette.

Both practices are run by the Cedar Medical group, a branch of the incorporating Malling Health (IMH) group.

Now, ward councillors and Basingstoke’s MP are calling for a change in management to improve the services available to residents.

Rooksdown ward councillor, Cllr Simon Bound told The Gazette he is getting no answers to concerns raised.

Cllr Bound said: “We have had nothing but radio silence from IMH.

“I am constantly hearing complaints of poor staff morale and this is impacting on the service my residents are receiving.

“The CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) should step in an make a much-need change.”

Recent inspections of both surgeries from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) rated both practices as ‘required improvements’.

As previously reported in The Gazette, a number of doctors had resigned from the Beggarwood practice, with reports of members of staff at the Rooksdown practice also handing in their notice.

Cllr Bound added: “It begs the question, if all these people are resigning has Cedar Medical got a bad reputation for staffing.”

IMH confirmed to The Gazette that one member of staff has resigned from the Rooksdown surgery but refused to comment further.

One Rooksdown resident, who wished to remain anonymous, told The Gazette staff at the practice ‘look miserable’.

He said: “It’s bad enough having to wait months to get an appointment, but when you are sat in the waiting room and all the staff just look glum it doesn’t fill you with hope that you’re going to get a great service.”

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Due to the ongoing issues at both practices Cllr Bound, along with Hatch Warren and Beggarwood councillor Terri Reid and Basingstoke MP Maria Miller, are calling for an emergency meeting with the North Hampshire CCG to address their concerns.

Mrs Miller has been raising the concerns of residents for more than three years direct with the Department of Health, NHS England and the local CCG but said the situation continues to deteriorate.

She said: “Local residents are now concerned about the reported departure of GPs employed at both practices as a result of a fundamental disagreement about the way in which the surgeries are being managed.

“Their concern has been growing over the past three years. The CCG has directly intervened to give assurances about the quality of medical care and the systems in place but there remains unacceptable level of concern amongst local residents about the service provided by Beggarwood and Rooksdown GP surgeries in practice.”

A spokeswoman from the North Hampshire CCG said: “The Beggarwood Practice is continuing to work closely with NHS England and the North Hampshire CCG to address staffing concerns and the other issues outlined in the CQC inspection.

“At present no changes to staff have been reported at the Rooksdown Practice. The CCG receives an update every week confirming staffing of both GPs and nurses at the Beggarwood branch and we will continue to monitor the situation.”

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