Health chiefs ‘disappointed’ to hear their decisions over Jarrow Walk-in Centre are being challenged

Dr Matthew Walmsley
Dr Matthew Walmsley

BOSSES at South Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group said they are “disappointed” that councillors are seeking Government intervention.

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Dr Matthew Walmsley, a local GP and Chairman of South Tyneside CCG, said: “It’s disappointing that the councillors wish to go against the view of local doctors and nurses.

“This challenge is not based on the best interests of the people of South Tyneside. The move to a single hub and relocation of the walk-in-centre should not be a surprise to councillors, as it is spelt out clearly in strategies which they themselves have already approved.

“Clinical opinion is clear that a single hub is the best way forward. A fully integrated service on the same site as A&E will help people get the right care first time, freeing up A&E staff to deal with genuine emergencies.

“There are absolutely no grounds to say that this will be detrimental to the health of the population and I would directly challenge the councillors over this.

“While the walk-in centre is convenient for people in Jarrow and Hebburn, it is clearly not the best location for the borough as a whole.

“It is scheduled to relocate in autumn 2015 with no interruption to the service, and for local councillors to say otherwise is deliberately misleading the public.

“Some concerns were raised through the consultation but we have listened to people’s views on issues like transport and access to GPs, and we are putting measures in place to tackle these concerns before the changes are made.”