Eighty-nine per cent of 1,191 people surveyed by health bosses backed the moving of two doctors’ surgeries in Kirkham and Wesham into a new £6m state-of-the-art health centre.
NHS commissioners want to demolish half-empty and costly office buildings at the old Wesham Park Hospital to make way for a new primary care centre that would house Kirkham Health Centre, Ash Tree House, and services currently running from Kirkham Clinic, it was announced.
The survey’s finding were independently checked by market research firm QA Research, and found that 89 per cent of people were ‘happy’ or ‘very happy’ with the proposal.
Clinical chief officer at Fylde and Wyre Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Dr Tony Naughton, said: “We wanted to give the people of Kirkham, Wesham and beyond the chance to have their say on this proposal.
“If they told us they didn’t want this development to go ahead then we wouldn’t take it any further.
“We are delighted at the response to the survey. More than six per cent of the people registered at the practices gave us their views.
“Having had the results of the survey independently analysed to ensure there is full impartiality in the interpretation of the results, we can now start thinking about the next steps in this proposal.”
A committee will now meet from 3.30pm on Monday to look at the plans and, if it gives its approval, the CCG’s governing body will then choose whether to back the development at a meeting at 1pm on Tuesday, November 21.
NHS Property Services, which owns the Derby Road building, would then make a final decision.
Both local meetings are public. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to book a seat in the audience.
The proposals were first revealed in June, and were discussed with patients over a 12-week period.
They were also backed by MP Mark Menzies, who said: “The changes are being made to ensure the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) can offer a fuller range of enhanced services to patients in state-of-the-art facilities in Kirkham and Wesham, rather than the facilities they have now which are at capacity and need repair.”
The new building, which would be under a mile from the current practices and on a bus route, could also host a pharmacy and other community services.
Under the proposal, the practices would continue to operate separately. Patients would remain with their GP, and still see the same nurses and other practice staff.
The number of car parking spaces would almost double to 140, and the office block at the old hospital would be demolished, with the current tenants forced to relocate.
And Dr Stephen Hardwick from Kirkham Health Centre added: “With increasing numbers of patients, plus the number and range of staff we employ, we are increasingly short of clinical rooms and parking spaces.”
Ash Tree House GP, Dr Jon Brown said: “We want to provide a wealth of services but are unable to do so to our full ability due to lack of space.”