Patients forced to move surgeries after doctor retires

Friockheim Health Centre's contract with NHS Tayside ends later this month.

Patients at an Angus GP practice forced to move after doctor retires

More than 3000 patients at an Angus GP practice are to be moved next month after efforts to keep their current service open failed.

Friockheim Health Centre announced in February that it would terminate its contract with NHS Tayside at the end of May.

Following a near two-year search for a doctor to replace a retiring GP, it’s been revealed patients will be dispersed to surrounding practices.

It comes after plans to find a single practice within Angus to largely take over the running of Friockheim were not achieved.

Tayside NHS Board supported the option to transfer patients to a small number of GP practices, local to where patients live.  

Patients have been sent individual letters to advise them of this decision and to outline the next step in the process.  

Angus South MSP Graeme Dey and Angus MP Dave Doogan have been in talks with the Primary Care Team of NHS Tayside regarding the closure.

Dey told STV News: “I can’t hide the fact that I’m extremely disappointed at the outcome here. We had cause to hope that there would be something better coming out of all of this.

“There was an expression of interest from another practice to take on most of the patients which would’ve been far better than what we’re faced with.

“Unfortunately that hasn’t come to reality.”

He added: “As I understand it at the moment, the health services are currently looking at where patients would go to, which practices.

“In an ideal world that would take account of the individual circumstances of these patients but I suspect it’s going to be done on a postcode basis.”

In a statement NHS Tayside said: “We are trying to make the transfer as seamless and easy for patients and therefore they do not need to do anything.

“NHS Tayside will register patients with another GP local to where they live and they will automatically transfer on June 1 to their new practice. 

“We will write to patients again very soon to give the details of their new GP and some more information about the transfer.”

Friockheim Health Centre will be open and running as normal up to May 31 and patients will continue to be looked after by the staff there until that date.”

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