Struggling GPs won’t talk to councillors

Picture shows Keighley Road Surgery, Illingworth

Picture shows Keighley Road Surgery, Illingworth

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A Halifax GP’s surgery has come under fire from ward councillors for failing to address patients’ concerns.

Keighley Road Surgery sparked outrage in August when letters were sent to its 10,000 patients saying the demand on services had made the surgery ‘unsafe’ and ‘unsustainable’.

Ward councillors in Illingworth have tried to talk to doctors at the surgery, only to be told all discussions must be done through NHS England.

Councillor Barry Collins (Lab, Illingworth and Mixenden) has said he has tried on a number of occasions to speak with doctors at the surgery without success.

He said: “It seems wrong to me that ward councillors representing literally thousands of people are being denied access to conversation with their local doctors about a crisis which the doctors themselves were flagging up.

“It was a request made in good faith - it was not just about the issue that was raised in that now infamous letter about waiting times and appointments - what we were asking for was a discussion about issues affecting GP surgeries nationally.

Will Menzies, business manager at Keighley Road surgery, said: “We meet regularly with them through our Patient Participation Group and local councillors are welcome to attend one of these meetings.

“This way he can hear the views of our patients and understand the work we are doing to improve services.”