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Village Surgery in Askam, Furness

Volume 677: debated on Wednesday 17 June 2020

The petition of residents of Barrow and Furness,

Declares that the general practitioner (GP) provision within the village of Askam in Furness, known as “Parklands Surgery” must remain in operation after the retirement of the village’s only current doctor on 30th June 2020; further that more than 1,500 local patients with limited public and private transport options are able to continue to access a GP easily and conveniently to maintain their personal health and well-being.

The petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to intervene to help provide a new GP to keep Parklands Surgery open and serving local people in Askam in Furness and Ireleth.

And the petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Simon Fell , Official Report, 22 April 2020; Vol. 675, c. 5P .]


Observations from the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Care (Jo Churchill):

The Government understand that the doctor at Parklands Surgery provided notice of their retirement to the Morecambe Bay Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in December 2019. Upon receiving the retirement notice the CCG, with the support of NHS England and NHS Improvement, undertook a market testing process to establish any local or national interest in the GP contract if it were to be formally procured. However, the CCG did not receive any completed expressions of interest that met the advertised contract terms. We are aware that the CCG’s Primary Care Commissioning Committee (PCCC) met on 18 February 2020 and reviewed all the information collated by the CCG and local stakeholders and decided that the patient list would be dispersed and that the practice would close.

We have been informed that in late April the CCG received an expression of interest from a local GP looking to apply for a branch surgery within the area of Askam. Both the PCCC and the CCG are supportive of the creation of a branch surgery for Askam and will review any branch surgery application that is received.

We believe that local CCGs are best placed to make decisions on commissioning services for their communities, working with local authorities, stakeholders and local populations to meet people’s needs. Morecambe Bay CCG will work with local practices to ensure the continued care for patients residing in Askam and Ireleth whether this be via a branch surgery or via dispersal to surrounding practices, supported by local transport solutions.