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GP crisis needs urgent attention
3:59pm Thursday 5th June 2014 in Your Views
During our local election campaign, it was clear that residents were often not accommodated and standing in a queue outside in all weathers at Claremont Road health centre simply due to too many patients turning up and restricted waiting room space inside.
A similar daily picture occurs at the even busier Sinnott Road health centre, where elderly and infirm, besides regular patients, are forced to wait in an even smaller room.
This is not a comment on the incredible high standard of medical consultation received from the Dr Elizabeth-led community health team and her colleagues, but this represents daily patient overload.
There is a dire shortage of community health rooms in Higham Hill.
For a ward with one of the highest medically dependent populations across all age groups, ranging from pre-natal young mothers to many elderly, vulnerable, frail and patients with mobility problems.
The solution sought has to be a new purpose-built state of the art community health centre in Higham Hill, with a new technology-geared permanent nursing team to see patients in their homes.
Many residents with daily serious healthcare needs struggle to make journeys to surgeries and when they arrive are confronted with severely overcrowded conditions.
Since 2004, GPs have been allowed to make specific times for appointments and nowadays many are not even prepared to work at weekends or bank holidays, often to the detriment of their patients.
When health treatments and emergencies occur out of hours, patient care works on another level of understanding human ailments.
I advocate the strongest appeal to our governing authorities, that it is now time to insist again that GPs should be compelled to make home visits 24/7, as was formerly the case, prior to the new shorter week day surgery based contracts that came into effect.
They were tailor designed for the medics, as opposed to improvement of individual patient care.
It is also time that Higham Hill received a ministerial visit to see for themselves what is happening at our local GP surgeries, where there are not enough primary health care GPs and nurses available and no government incentive to make them all do home runs if patients cannot visit them.
Higham Hill Liberal Democrats.
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