Growing town will need a new surgery, warn Keynsham doctors

Published on: 09 Nov 2012

Growing town will need a new surgery, warn Keynsham doctors

Doctors in Keynsham are calling for a new surgery to be included within the Somerdale development to help the town’s practices cope with thousands of extra patients.

With the population predicted to rise by 4,000 with developments at Somerdale and K2, GPs at St Augustine’s Surgery, in Station Road, have raised concerns that the existing three practices would not be able to meet demand.

Members of the practice have now called on patients and the town council to back their bid to relocate to a bigger surgery built at the former Cadbury site, supported by S106 money from developer Taylor Wimpey.

The GPs say it would help them improve access for patients and provide more healthcare services within the community, which they hope would include a chemist and space for exercise classes and other activities.

A spokesperson for St Augustine’s said: “The Somerdale site is perfect for us as it is close to our existing surgery and we are most likely to be affected by the population increase at this end of the town.

“It also enables us to modernise, expand and provide access to more services for our current and new patients.

“The current surgery has been in this part of Keynsham for over 100 years now and we are keen to maintain its historical location as far as possible.”

The doctors are also urgently calling for a new health needs assessment for Keynsham, involving local doctors, to ascertain each surgery’s capacity.

The spokesperson said: “We feel strongly that a new health needs assessment is needed because none of the GP stakeholders were contacted for their opinions on whether we had capacity to accommodate the increase in Keynsham’s population.

“If residents want to support us they could contact B&NES Council’s planning department or our MP.”

Keynsham Town Council has agreed to write to Councillor Vic Pritchard, chairman of the wellbeing policy development and scrutiny panel on B&NES Council, and other local authority representatives supporting the doctors’ calls.

A spokesperson for Taylor Wimpey said: “There is potential for the provision of a doctor’s surgery within the Somerdale site and we are in discussions with interested parties to ensure the development meets the needs of not only the residents but also the local community.”

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