Residents came out in force to share their frustrations and growing concerns over health provision at the first public meeting of the Hucknall Planning for Growth Patient Group.
The event was held on Thursday 31st July at the Seymour Road Baptist Church and proved a big draw for over 50 residents eager to have their say.
The group has been set up, in conjunction with the Nottingham North and EastClinical Commissioning Group (CCG), to discuss how the planned development of Hucknall might impact on GP services in the town.
Concerns and suggestions for change and improvements was encouraged as part of this meeting, and for future ones, to take patients’ views to the Hucknall Steering Group via volunteer patient representative Kathryn Sanderson.
Kathryn led the meeting explaining to those present her role within the process and the need for feedback.
In a presentation to the crowd, which also included district and county council representatives, Kathryn stressed the importance of attending these meetings in order to get personal experiences from patients of all four health practices in the town.
She moved to encourage patients to have their say in order to make improvements and prepare for the impact of an increased population.
“It was great to see so many people turn out for this patient-led event,” said Michael Ellis, engagement manager at NNE CCG.
“It was heartening to hear many people talk about the positive experiences they’ve had with their GPs, and there were some good debates around the current issues that are impacting on local healthcare services.
“There were a number of concerns raised, particularly around GP availability and waiting times. The aim of the patient working group is to identify key issues like these and explore solutions.
“We look forward to seeing how the group works with local GPs to find the right solution for Hucknall.”
The next meeting is on Wednesday 3rd September 6.30-8.30pm at Seymour Road Church.
Residents’ reaction following meeting
Many residents didn’t know what to expect from the meeting but were glad to have their voices heard in a forum for change.
Keith and Pat Bestwick of Leen Valley Way are patients at the Torkard Centre and expressed their dismay at the everchanging NHS.
“The Primary Care Trust was a well established body and now it has changed to the CCG it has confused patients.
“We would like to see an additional central unit for specific services like blood tests and ECGs to take some of the weight off our GPs.”
Kerry Humpreys moved to Laughton Crescent from Top Valley two years ago and is also a patient at Torkard. She said it was much easier and quicker to see a doctor at her previous practice.
“Now it is a case of an ‘emergency appointment’ today or wait five weeks.
“It’s just not good enough. However when you do finally get to see the doctor they’re fantastic.”
Retired pharmacist and Papplewick resident, Margaret Kerr, is a patient at Whyburn and also sits on their Patient Participation Group (PPG).
“I believe there should be a patient representative on the Steering Group from each practice not just one person to represent us all,” said Mrs Kerr.
These feelings were echoed by Hucknall Carers’ Group chairman, Jim Radburn.
“There are too many professionals on the panel and not enough patient representation,” said Mr Radburn.
“There is a crisis in the town but the problem is, NHS England say there isn’t a crisis.”