MP calls for staff to be moved from other surgeries to get Peterborough GP practice open

Surgery says reception staff have left after being subjected to abuse from patients

By Stephen Briggs
Thursday, 23rd June 2022, 4:25 pm

Peterborough MP Paul Bristow has called for staff to be moved from other GP surgeries in Peterborough to get another medical practice in the city back open as soon as possible.

Thorney Medical Centre was temporarily closed last week due to a lack of reception staff at the surgery. Residents are now having to travel to Eye for appointments.

Jenner Healthcare, who run both the Thorney and Eye surgery, have said they are recruiting new staff now, and blamed the loss of staff on abuse some patients have given out.

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Paul Bristow has called on the CCG to get the surgery open as soon as possible. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

Mr Bristow has now called on the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG to do all they can to get the practice open as soon as possible.

Following a meeting with Jan Thomas, accountable officer at the CCG, he write a letter to her, and said: “I would like to thank our hard working NHS staff in Peterborough and across Cambridgeshire for their work and commitment on behalf of patients. I do understand the frustration that some patients feel, but I do condemn any abuse that staff have had to endure. This is completely unacceptable.

"As we discussed, I would be grateful if you could see whether there are staff in other parts of the NHS across Peterborough and Cambridgeshire that might be seconded to the practice to help it re-open. I know Jenner Healthcare run three practices in Eye, Whittlesey and Thorney, but it might make sense to bring other NHS administrative workers from other parts of our NHS if there is enough capacity.”

Mr Bristow added: It is not right that Thorney Medical Practice is not open and being used by local people.

"Thorney deserves a medical practice.”

In a statement on their website, Jenner Healthcare said: “ These are difficult times for all of us, but the NHS is facing massive difficulties in workforce.

“We are not immune to these pressures, and we have recently lost a number of reception staff.

“With the advice and support of local NHS CCG leaders, we have taken the decision to temporarily close Thorney Reception.

“We are recruiting and interviewing new staff right now.

“Once we have found the right people, we will train them.

“The moment it is safe to do so, we will reopen up Thorney reception.”

The statement added: “Sadly, a very small number of patients have been verbally abusing our staff – this leads to people leaving those jobs when we desperately need to retain the excellent staff we have.

“These public behaviours are regrettable, but are thankfully a minority.”

A spokesperson for the CCG said: “We are working closely with Thorney Medical Practice to reopen the site at Thorney as soon as possible. There is recruitment actively under way. In the meantime, it is hoped that redeployment from partner practices or the Primary Care Network will mean that the site can open part-time soon.

“We understand that this is an issue of significant importance to the local community and would like to reassure patients that teams are working tirelessly to reopen the practice as soon as practicable. Patients can still call the normal practice number and be at seen another site or have a virtual consultation, so that their clinical needs are still met.”

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