Read about changes that affect nine GP surgeries in Walsall
In July 2017 NHS Walsall CCG launched a six week public consultation on possible changes to some GP practices in Walsall due to their Alternative Provider Medical Services (APMS) contracts coming to an end in early 2018.
As the contracts were coming to an end NHS Walsall CCG needed to review them and decide how future services could look within the borough.
A public consultation was launched on July 26, 2017 and ran until September 06, 2017 giving patients at the affected practices the chance to have their say on the future of their GP services.
During the six week public consultation a broad range of methods were used to promote and facilitate feedback from patients, the public, local stakeholders - including elected representatives - and staff. These included public meetings, social media activity, community outreach and focus groups with seldom heard groups.
The CCG worked closely with Healthwatch Walsall to engage with effected patients and over 1,000 surveys were completed.
What decisions were made following the consultation?
NHS Walsall CCG's Governing Body met on November 7, 2017 and agreed the following recommendations given by Primary Care Committee:
- Area 1 – Combine the contracts of Manor Medical, Wharf Family Practice and Sai Medical Practice and base the practices at Forrester Street – meaning the current three practices will become one larger practice. Current patients of Wharf Family Practice would go to Forrester Street for care – Sai Medical Practice and Manor Medical Practice are already based at Forrester Street.
- Area 2 – Combine the three GP practice contracts of Blakenall Family Practice, Harden Family Practice and Coalpool Family Practice and base them at two sites, Harden Health Centre and Blakenall – meaning the current three practices will become one larger practice. There will now be a single reception desk at Harden Health Centre and patients of the combined practice would be able to go to either Harden Health Centre or Blakenall.
- Area 3a – Allow the contract to expire at Kingfisher Practice and not procure anything in its place. This means that patients will go to other nearby practices. Patients of Kingfisher Practice can register at Berkley Practice and Stroud Practice, which are in the same building as Kingfisher Practice, or other surrounding practices.
- Area 3b – Retain the contract at the Keys Family Practice allowing it to stay open.
- Area 4 – Remove late evening and weekend appointments from APMS contracts (The Keys Family Practice, Coalpool Family Practice, Harden Family Practice, The Wharf Family Practice, Collingwood Family Practice). However, the Extended GP Access service is available to Walsall residents.
How will these changes affect me?
Modality Partnership will now run these GP practices and GP practice staff at these sites will become employed by the new provider. Modality Partnership is a GP super partnership who are a single organisation led by GPs with GP practices in Walsall, Birmingham, Yorkshire, Hull and the South East of England.
- From 01 September, 2018 Wharf Family Practice, Sai Medical Practice and Manor Medical Centre will become one practice based at Forester Street. Patients who are currently registered at Wharf Family Practice will automatically be transferred to the new surgery 0.5 miles from their current GP practice.
- From 01 September, 2018 Harden Family Practice, Coalpool Family Practice and Blakenall Family Practice will also merge and become one GP surgery from 01 September 2018. However, the new surgery will be based across two sites at Harden Health Centre and Blakenall. This will allow registered patients the ability to see a GP at both sites, offering more flexibility to see a GP.
- Two other practices affected by the contract changes in September 2018 are Keys Family Practice and Collingwood Family Practice. Both these practices will remain open, and they will also be operated by Modality Partnership.
- The new contracts will mean all four practices will be open from 8am – 6.30pm every weekday, with no half-day closing and all four practices will provide some evening and weekend appointments through the National Directed Enhanced Service for Extended Access.
During these changes the practices will be unable to offer appointments on certain days to allow for essential work to take place.
- Harden and Coalpool – no appointments will be available on the afternoon of Tuesday 14th August
- Harden, Coalpool and Blakenall - no appointments will be available on the afternoon of Friday 7th September
- Wharf and Manor – no appointments will be available after 1pm on August 14th
- Sai, Wharf and Manor – no appointments will be available from 1pm on August 31st until the merge is complete on September 3rd
If you require a GP appointment during this time please use the Extended GP Access service. Call 01922 501999 to book an appointment.
Where can I find out more information?
A series of patient engagement events are taking place over the summer to allow any patients to come along and find out more about these changes. These events will take place on:
- Monday, August 6 2018, 1pm – 3pm at Coalpool Surgery, Harden Road, Walsall, WS3 1ET (concerning Harden Family Practice, Coalpool Family Practice and Blakenall Family Practice)
- Wednesday, August 8 2018, 1pm – 3pm at Keys Family Practice, Field Street, Willenhall, WV13 2NY
- Monday, August 13 2018, 1pm – 3pm at Forrester Street, Walsall, WS2 9PL (concerning Wharf Family Practice, Sai Medical Practice and Manor Medical Centre)
- Tuesday, August 14 2018, 1pm – 2pm at Collingwood Family Practice, Collingwood Drive, Birmingham, B43 7NF