I am delighted that the NHS Lincolnshire CCG has confirmed that a lease has been agreed for the St Mary’s Medical Centre to continue to be available, providing healthcare services for the people of Stamford and our surrounding villages.
Much work has been going on behind the scenes with key stakeholders coming together to find a solution that works for the residents of Stamford and our surrounding villages.
Together with my neighbouring MPs and our local council leaders, I set out in a letter to John Turner – CEO CCG, published in the Stamford Mercury, the key concerns that residents have had, to ask that the CCG act expeditiously to resolve the dispute and to set out a long term vision for Primary Care in Samford. Since then, I have been in regular contact with John Turner, receiving updates on the negotiations to get the matter resolved.
I would like to thank John Turner in particular for his leadership on this matter and the way in which he has been open and constructive in providing these regular updates. The outcome, with the Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS) signing the lease with the freeholders to secure the site for the NHS, means that the site is secured and I am pleased that the CCG has now publicly committed to develop a plan and long term vision for Primary Care in Stamford.
It is right that the CCG now commit to carrying out a review of what led to this situation in the first place so that it can be avoided in the future, and this is something I will continue to make clear in the weeks and months ahead.
I would like to thank all residents who engaged with the process to express their concerns and views, and I especially thank Andrew Nebel the Chair of the PPG in this regard. I have found this engagement hugely helpful to represent the range of views to the CCG as the Member of Parliament.
Timeline of activity and engagement:
- On 18th September, Gareth wrote to the CEO of Lakeside Healthcare Group, Professor Robert Harris, asking for his comments on the points which were raised by residents.
- In response, Professor Harris and Gareth arranged a virtual call to discuss the situation. Covering both the history and the rationale behind the decision that has subsequently taken place. Gareth also received a copy of the NHS Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group's (CCG’s) summary, concerning the discussions that had taken place regarding the surgery, which can be read through the attachment linked below.
- As the summary attached states an engagement process ran from 14th September to 25th October. In addition to this, patients at St Mary's Medical Centre and Sheepmarket Surgery in Stamford were able to join Zoom meetings to discuss the closure of the St Mary's site.
- On 1st October, Gareth convened a meeting with his constituency neighbours, Alicia Kearns MP for Rutland and Melton, and Tom Pursglove MP for Corby, to discuss how best they can coordinate with each other on this issue. Following this meeting, Gareth got in touch with another neighbour, Shailesh Vara MP for Northwest Cambridgeshire.
- On 8th October, Gareth had a call with the Chief Executive of the NHS Lincolnshire CCG, John Turner to gain his perspective on the matter and to ask that he continue to work hard to bring the sides together to find a suitable solution.
- On the 16th October, Gareth also spoke with the freeholders of the surgery.
- On the 27th October, together with his constituency neighbours, Tom Pursglove, Alicia Kearns and the Leaders of South Kesteven District Council and Lincolnshire County Council, Cllr. Kelham Cooke and Cllr. Martin Hill, Gareth coordinated a joint letter to John Turner, calling for his immediate attention to the concerns raised by constituents regarding St Mary’s, as well as calling for a long-term strategy for primary care in our town. A copy of this letter can be read through the attachments below.
- On 11th December, Gareth had a further meeting with John Turner, to further discuss progress on St Mary's.