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Call made for more GPs in Telford - with patients waiting for up to three weeks

By Mat Growcott | Telford | Health | Published:

More doctors are needed in Telford it has been claimed, as the town's MP revealed some people are waiting up to three weeks to be seen.

Telford MP Lucy Allan said there was huge pressure on GPs' surgeries, which meant there was "unacceptable" waiting times for appointments.

She said there needed to be a mix of more GPs, but also better demand management of services.

Ms Allan said: “Doctors’ waiting times are an issue that my constituents are increasingly concerned about and raise with me regularly.

“Telford is a rapidly growing new town and it is clear that there is huge pressure on GP’s surgeries resulting in unacceptable waiting times for an appointment.

“Residents tell me that it can be very difficult to get an appointment within two weeks, which in turn puts pressure on A&E.

“There is a capacity issue and an access issue. I want to see more GPs, but also some sensible thinking about demand management, how to screen for priority cases and sign post to the appropriate community service.

"It can’t be right that a patient wanting an appointment may find themselves calling back each day and still not getting an appointment."

Ms Allan said out of hours services would be useful, but that the priority must be elsewhere.

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“I will be raising this issue in Parliament at every opportunity and will work with the local CCG to ensure that surgeries are able to meet the increasing demand," she said.

“The Government is focussed on delivering out of hours services. This can be helpful for people who work, however, the priority in Telford needs to be more GPs and more appointments slots.”

Her comments come as residents are asked to fill in a survey by Shropshire and Teflord & Wrekin CCGs on their opinions on extended services.

They wrote: "By October 1 Clinical Commissioning Groups have to ensure that all patients can book routine appointments with a GP, or other health professional from 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday and at weekends subject to local need.

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"This does not mean that all GP practices must open during these extra hours, but there will need to be enough appointments offered to reduce the need for you to travel too far.

"Any additional appointments will normally be provided by existing GPs or other health professionals in Shropshire who provide appointments during normal working hours."

Included questions on the survey deal with data sharing, ideal hours and travel.

Mat Growcott

By Mat Growcott
Reporter - @MGrowcott_Star

Shropshire Star reporter

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