Residents invited to have their say on future of Haverhill GP practice

PUBLISHED: 10:19 19 October 2017 | UPDATED: 10:29 19 October 2017

Left to right: Dr Tom Curtis, Suffolk GP Federation's director of community services, Sheila Smythe, Dr Fiona Andrews, Suffolk GP Federation chief executive, David Pannell, Suffolk GP Federation's operations director Julie Smith, Suffolk GP Federation's director of primary care services, Jules Styles and Christopher Griffiths. Picture: JAMES FLETCHER

Left to right: Dr Tom Curtis, Suffolk GP Federation's director of community services, Sheila Smythe, Dr Fiona Andrews, Suffolk GP Federation chief executive, David Pannell, Suffolk GP Federation's operations director Julie Smith, Suffolk GP Federation's director of primary care services, Jules Styles and Christopher Griffiths. Picture: JAMES FLETCHER

Archant

Haverhill residents are being invited to have their say on the future of a GP surgery in the town later this month.

Suffolk GP Federation took over the running of Christmas Maltings and Clements Practice in July, and since then the organisation has introduced a number of changes – including a new way to book appointments.

Patients are now being invited to an information and engagement evening at 7pm on Monday, October 30, at the Clements building in Greenfields Way.

Members of the public will be able to learn more about the changes, share their views, and fill in a questionnaire.

Those unable to attend the engagement evening can find the questionnaire on the Christmas Maltings and Clements Practice website or Facebook page, and in the reception areas. These should be filled in and placed in the boxes provided by November 3.

Julia Styles, Suffolk GP Federation’s director of primary care services, said: “We want patients to be involved in the future of the surgery and we’d like to hear their views.

“The engagement event is a chance for them to ask questions and to learn more about what we have planned in the coming months.

“The changes we have already made include a new booking system, which appears to be working well - although we are aware that some patients have had to wait a long time when phoning the surgery.

“We are working hard to change that and are in the process of recruiting new receptionists to help at busy times.

“We’ll take all feedback on board and use the information to help shape our decision making moving forward.

“In particular we’d like patients’ comments around the future of Christmas Maltings. Negotiations with the building’s current owners are ongoing and we would like to know what patients think regarding any potential move.

“We are also exploring the possibility of running joint services with Haverhill Family Practice.”

Among the changes already introduced is the recruitment of a physiotherapist who is now available to treat patients on weekday mornings.

A prescribing pharmacist has also started to help with repeat prescriptions and medication requests previously dealt with by a GP.

Patients can now book an appointment to see a clinician at the Clements surgery between 9am and 5pm on a Saturday. The appointments are offered as part of Suffolk GP Federation’s GP+ service which operates in east Suffolk and Bury St Edmunds.

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