Dunne alarmed at GP Surgery services being cut in North Down

North Down MLA Stephen Dunne has expressed his grave concern about the news that both the Priory Surgery in Holywood and Springhill Surgery in Bangor will cease providing General Medical Services from 1st February 2023

By Stephen Dunne MLA

North Down

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The DUP MLA said,

"Shock waves have rippled through the Holywood and Bangor West communities on hearing the news that the current GP partners at Priory Surgery in Holywood (which includes Springhill Surgery in Bangor), will cease providing GP services to 14, 525 patients as of 1 February 2023.

Like many of my constituents and registered patients, I was appalled to find this out through the press and social media. Our community are rightfully worried about the devastating impact of this, especially as we face a winter of uncertainty regarding Covid and the ongoing flu vaccination programme. This news puts all of that into question together with the wide range health services and clinics which are provided to our community.

This dramatic potential closure of services statement, as reported in the press, has come as a shock to everyone and without warning, including any consultation with local political representatives and the community. Surely there is a better way to deal with the transition to potential new GP partners without creating fear and anxiety within the community? People build trust with their local GP over many years and many will feel distressed by the perceived finality of this announcement.

I have written to the Health Minister about this as a matter of urgency and requested a meeting with the practice partners to discuss how the situation can be best managed and to ensure that local provision is not put in jeopardy.

It is absolutely essential that Partners are in place as soon as possible to ensure a continuity of services. Public confidence in GP delivery is at an all-time low given the ongoing issues with access to GP services and this announcement will further add to patient frustration and indeed anger.

I will do whatever I can to ensure that my constituents have a GP service which they can access at the point of need.

The Practice have said that ‘Priory and Springhill Surgery remains open and patients who require GP care should continue to contact the surgery as normal. Work is underway to find GPs to take over the practice. "

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