Sefton Council is strongly opposing NHS England’s decision to close Hightown village surgery.
NHS England has just announced that the surgery, which serves Sefton residents, will shut later in the year with Sefton Council now calling on the decision to be reversed.
A special Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting is now scheduled for March 22 as Sefton Council believes NHS England has not followed the right process or engaged with the public properly about this.
Cllr Ian Maher, Labour Leader at Sefton Council, said: “We as a Council are dismayed and extremely disappointed at the way NHS England has handled this matter.
“The closure decision was made and then communicated to residents in advance of any meaningful dialogue with the community and ourselves and taken without any reference to the statutory role of the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee.
“This really exposes wider concerns about the willingness of the NHS to engage with the Council on significant matters affecting health services in Sefton and the apparent lack of any strategic commissioning approach to the provision of primary care to Sefton communities.
“Our ultimate concern is the safety and wellbeing of our communities and we would again request NHS England to review this decision and keep the surgery open while a meaningful engagement takes place.
“This is going to be extremely difficult as the closure decision has already been made, patients notified and allocated to new practices. The last thing we want is patients being confused about the process – something NHS England should be ashamed of.
“As a result we are arranging a special Overview and Scrutiny Committee to consider this matter and to seek assurance from NHS England and the CCG that the health and wellbeing of the people of Hightown has been paramount in this decision.
“We have written to NHS England expressing all of our concerns and hope they react and respond in the way that betters the communities we serve.”