The Lister House Partnership, which provides GP services in Wiveliscombe and Milverton, has transferred its management to Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, the county’s provider of community, mental health and learning disability services.
The arrangement was made when the previous GP partners of Lister House approached Somerset Partnership as they were leaving or retiring and could not recruit any new GPs to fill the vacancies.
Dr Nick Broughton, Chief Executive of Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, confirmed the transfer and said:
“I am delighted to welcome the staff and patients of Lister House Partnership to our Trust. We believe that being part of a bigger organisation will bring real benefits to staff and patients alike. We have already seen evidence of this in our recent recruitment campaign where we successfully appointed three new GPs for the practice.
“We can also bring more services closer to Wiveliscombe and Milverton patients. Somerset Partnership delivers a wide range of community and mental health services, some of which we can bring into the surgery. This means that as well as continued access to GPs, patients will be able to get a wider range of care and clinics, such as physiotherapy, mental health talking therapies, closer to home.”
The work to bring Lister House Partnership under the management of the NHS Trust has closely involved the surgery staff to ensure a smooth handover.
Emma Spiller, Lister House Practice Manager, welcomed the announcement:
“The management team and staff, at Lister House are delighted to have joined with Somerset Partnership to move our primary care services into the future. Our collaboration will ensure, not only that GP and other local services are safeguarded, but that we can offer a wider range of services and look to establish a holistic `one-stop-shop` for patient care in the area.
“During this period of transition, we will be working hard to make sure there is an absolute minimum of disruption to patients, at the same time, continuing the high level of care for which Lister House has always been proud."
In making the new arrangements, Somerset Partnership has also worked with local patients through the local patient group.
Chairman of the Lister House Patient Group, Peter Berman, said:
“We have known for some time of the difficulty in recruiting GPs and are delighted that the Trust has been so successful in doing so. We look forward to a good working relationship with the Trust and our experience so far has been wholly positive. It is of vital importance in a rural area that Primary Care services are delivered locally and we look forward to the possibility of these being expanded in the future.”