Patients are being offered help to register for a new GP

Pottergate Surgery, Gainsborough.
Pottergate Surgery, Gainsborough.

West Lindsey District Council bosses are urging residents to contact them if they are struggling with the registration process for a new GP in Gainsborough.

It follows the announcement that four Lincolnshire GP surgeries will close in the New Year, including the Pottergate Surgery, on Vanessa Drive.

New providers were not found in time to take over management of the practices after Universal Health Ltd asked the NHS to end its contract on August 1 due to financial difficulties.

Councillor Sheila Bibb said: “People have been contacting myself and other council representatives, concerned about the closure of the surgery in particular re-registering to a new GP practice.

“They are also worried about the extra pressure this will have on the remaining GP surgeries and delays on getting appointments.”

Lincolnshire West Clinical Commissioning Group has said that patients who need to move will all have an alternative option within 0.2 miles of their current surgery.

The CCG is offering support to patients to choose and register with an alternative GP Practice by January 7.

If patients do not do so by the deadline they will allocate a surgery to patients, based on location—although any allocation can be changed in future.

Coun Bibb said: “If you, or your friends and family, need help to choose a new surgery and register appropriately, our customer services staff and health coordinator are available to help you. They can also help you complete forms to make it easier for you to find a suitable alternative practice.”

Dr Sunil Hindocha, of NHS Lincolnshire West, said: “Around a third of patients at Pottergate have re-registered elsewhere and I thank them for their prompt response.

“We understand these are regrettable circumstances and some patients will feel concerned but we are committed to ensuring patients continue to access good quality, local, GP-led health services.”

n For more information visit www.lincolnshirewestccg.nhs.uk or call 01522 515380.

Forms to re-register will be available from the council’s Guildhall Office at Marshall’s Yard. For advice, call the council’s customer services team on 01427 676676.