Committee slams ‘unacceptable’ closure of Spearpoint GP Surgery in Newbury Park

Angry residents outside the surgery

Angry residents outside the surgery - Credit: Archant

The decision to close down a surgery with a week’s notice has been described as “disgusting” at a health scrutiny meeting and an acceptable alternative has still not been found.

Spearpoint GP Surgery, in Aldborough Road North, Newbury Park was shut in June with patients now having to go to King George Hospital, Barley Lane, Goodmayes.

Cllr Joyce Ryan, chairman of the health scrutiny committee, said patients should not have to pay for parking at the hospital and it was too far from the previous surgery.

NHS England London ­Region said the cost of bringing the closed surgery up to Care Quality Commission standards was “prohibitive”.

Cllr Ryan, speaking at the meeting last week, said: “The NHS has to hold their hands up that it was wrong how it happened.

“There should have been more time and it was disgusting that people were given a week’s notice.”

She said free parking should be provided and the fact many elderly patients could only get on one very busy bus to the hospital was unacceptable.

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“We are asking if the hospital could designate some parking spaces for people from Spearpoint,” Cllr Ryan said. “The whole committee is very upset with how it was done and it was completely unacceptable.”

A spokesman for NHS ­England said it had attempted to get some free parking but it had been “unsuccessful.”

The spokesman added that patients finding out through a sign left on the practice door a week before it closed was due to the “tight timescales involved”.

She said: “We were unable to set a final date for the move ­until we had been ­informed that the premises were ready.

“IT works were not completed and as soon as we had been informed of this, ­letters to patients were sent out.”