Shropdoc to stay for two more years

Shropdoc will continue to run Shropshire's out-of-hours GP service for at least two years following a vote by health chiefs.

Shropdoc to stay for two more years

But the service will go out to tender in 2018 and other companies will be invited to bid for the contract, despite protests from residents who want to see Shropdoc retained.

Members of Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), which buy in health services, voted at an extraordinary meeting held last night at the Holiday Inn in Telford.

As part of the changes, people will be asked to ring the NHS 111 number from October for non-emergency care.

Trained call providers will be on hand for advice, reassurance, or to pass callers on to a doctor or nurse or arrange an appointment with an out-of-hours GP.

The Shropdoc number will remain in place alongside it for at least six months.

But it could be switched off at any point after that depending on the success of 111.

Dr Michael Innes, chairman of Telford & Wrekin CCG and a Stirchley GP, said: "

Everyone knows that 999 is the number to use in emergencies. We want 111 to become as well known for people who don't have an emergency but really need to speak to someone straight away about their medical needs or those of a loved one."

Dr Helen Herrity, chair of Shropshire CCG, said: "We know that people value the service provided by Shropdoc. The plans approved ensure Shropdoc will continue to provide the out-of-hours service until at least 2018."

But Gill George, of Shropshire Defend Our NHS, said: "We want the choice and freedom to go on calling the very well respected and trusted out-of-hours number we have now."

Pat McCarthy, of Telford Defend Our NHS, said in a survey carried out by the CCG, only 33 per cent of people questioned were happy with the 111 number. He said the figure for Shropdoc was 94 per cent.

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.

Top Stories

More from the Shropshire Star

UK & International News