Leeds villagers in fight to save surgery

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Villagers will meet today to raise fears that their doctors’ surgery could be the latest to go after a string of closures and mergers of GP practices.

People in Swillington have voiced concerns that sick and elderly people will have too far to travel for treatment if the village practice shuts down.

Leeds NHS bosses are due to make a decision of the future of Swillington Health Practice, along with New Cross Surgery in Rothwell and Middleton Park Surgery.

Grange Medicare is due to cease running the three practices when its contract ends in October.

Jacqui Smith, a patient at the Swillington practice, said many patients registered there were elderly and had mobility problems.

She said: “Travelling out of Swillington would be a huge issue for them.”

Five GP practices in Leeds have closed since 2013, and a further eight have merged to create four new practices, NHS bosses confirmed.

Mrs Smith said representatives from NHS West Leeds Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) would be at today’s meeting from 10am at the village hall, on Church Lane.

The CCG said a report was being prepared on the future of the GP service after patients took part in a survey.

A spokeswoman said: “As part of the consultation we put forward different ways in which future services might be delivered.

“Following the decision we will be holding a series of engagement activities to inform local people and shape the service model.”

Grange Medicare has held the contract to run the three surgeries since 2008. The CCG added: “Grange Medicare have indicated that they don’t wish to be part of this procurement process.”