Have your say on NHS
Rutherglen and Cambuslang residents are being urged to have their say as a review of out- of- hours GP services reaches its conclusion.
The issue has proved controversial, with local SNP and Labour politicians clashing in the past. The Scottish Government ’s national review is set to conclude this autumn.
Rutherglen and Cambuslang residents are being urged to have their say on the Scottish Government’s National Review of Primary Care Out-of-Hours Services.
Rutherglen MP Margaret Ferrier and the SNP’s Holyrood candidate Clare Haughey, a healthcare professional who will be contesting the Rutherglen seat for the SNP at next year’s Scottish Parliament elections, are urging local people to make sure their voices are heard on the issue.
The review is being led by Professor Sir Lewis Richie OBE, and he is keen to hear the views of all those with an interest in how Out-of-Hours services are delivered.
Commenting, Rutherglen and Hamilton West MP Margaret Ferrier claims there has been some misinformation and scaremongering about services potentially being removed.
She said: “Both myself, and Bob Doris MSP, sought assurances from NHS Lanarkshire that Out-of-Hours service provision would remain at the New Victoria Hospital. The response given indicated that the board had no plans to change services for Rutherglen and Cambuslang residents, and that they would await the outcome of this review to decide what, if any, changes should be made.
“I have long championed for Out- of- Hours to become even more local. We have a wonderful facility at the Rutherglen Primary Care Centre on Stonelaw Road, which has recently seen the completion of a half a million pounds upgrade. I will be recommending that consideration be given to utilising the centre for Out-ofHours provision. Should this not be feasible, I will be making it clear that the Rutherglen and Cambuslang areas must continue to be serviced by the New Victoria.”
But James Kelly, Labour MSP for Rutherglen, said the issue had not been resolved: “Local people are telling me that they continue to be concerned about the threat to local Out-of-Hours provision. There is good reason for this as NHS Lanarkshire have made it clear to me that if the Scottish Government review results in a change of policy and a move from the current base at the Victoria , they will implement this change without consultation. It is little wonder then that people are anxious.
“I also raised in parliament last week the worry that local GPs are so stretched that they are not able to provide support to Outof-Hours care.
“The SNP government need to make clear that their current Out- of- Hours review will not affect the present arrangements whereby local patients travel to the Victoria.”
Health Secretary Shona Robison confirmed the review is on schedule and Sir Lewis Ritchie will report his findings and final recommendations in the autumn. She said: “Sir Lewis Ritchie has taken an inclusive approach in his leadership of the National Review including the completion of a National Engagement Programme. This provided the opportunity for a diverse range of professionals as well as public and political representatives from all health board areas, and special health boards, to offer their views to Sir Lewis in his formulation of his report.”
Current base The New Victoria Hospital and Margaret Ferrier MSP (below)