Thousands sign petition against Sudbury GP practice changes

Paul Lorber, Gaynor Lloyd, Grace Balogun and Audrey Wade took their 3,700 strong petition to the NH

Paul Lorber, Gaynor Lloyd, Grace Balogun and Audrey Wade took their 3,700 strong petition to the NHS to tell them not to replace their Sudbury GP provider. - Credit: Archant

Thousands of patients at a GP practice in Sudbury have signed a petition demanding that NHS England drop their plans to take the practice away from the existing doctors.

Patients from the Sudbury Primary Care Practice in Watford Road, took their 3,700 signature petition to the headquarters of NHS Improvement, which is responsible for overseeing foundation trusts and NHS trusts.

Patients of the centre, including Cllr Keith Perrin and former Liberal Democrat councillor Paul Lorber, have vowed to leave the surgery if it is handed to a new provider.

Gaynor Lloyd, of campaign group Brent Patient Voice, said: “NHS England undermined the tendering process by making it look to the public that the surgery had performance issues and that’s why it was being tendered.

“We took our petition to parliament in March and Brent CCG the following week, and this week we took it to NHS improvement which used to be called Monitor. They will decide if they will investigate the tendering process.”

Cllr Wilhelmina Mitchell Murray, the chair of the patient participation group, said: “The vast majority of the patients at the practice support our doctors as evidenced by the strong petition which we present to the NHS.

“Local patients are very angry at the ‘lie’ being put around by NHS England that the practice was failing to perform.

Most Read

“This is a disgrace and we are demanding that NHS England now stop the process of taking our GPs away from us.”

Mr Lorber said he and many of the patients plan to boycott any new providers that the NHS “plan to foist upon” them.

He added: “NHS England claim that they wish to listen to the patients and that our wishes are paramount. The way the NHS bureaucrats have mishandled the bidding for my GP practice is a scandal and shows that the needs of the patients are completely ignored.

“It is a tragedy that the only way we can get our voices heard is by threatening to boycott the new providers at this practice in the future.”

A spokeswoman for NHS England denied the tender was triggered by performance issues.

She added: “The contract at Sudbury Vale was coming to an end and so, in order to continue the service we were obliged to undertake a procurement process to commission a provider.

She added: “The contract is due to be awarded week commencing June 20. The current provider will stay in place until the contract expires on the October 30 and the new provider will start service delivery on November 1.”