Statement Regarding Change of Ownership
The surgery has received several enquiries recently regarding the change of ownership of the Lydney Practice. Communication to our patients has proved difficult during the last year and we have now finally embraced change and created a surgery Facebook page as well as updating our website in order to better share information such as this.
It is very touching that people are so protective of the surgery and I hope that the following information will be reassuring to those that have been concerned.
Sadly the group of GPs (Drs Sharma, Thwaite, Bounds and Bennett) that have served the Lydney area so well for the last 30 years or so, have all taken well deserved retirement. It is worth noting that Dr Sharma has an interesting view of the meaning of retirement and seems to work more days now than ever before, including a regular day a week at the Practice!
The remaining GPs have sadly struggled to find doctors to fill the vacancies at the surgery and this led to an unsustainable workload. Just prior to the pandemic the GP partners approached the local CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) to see if they could help us to find practices that might be willing to merge with us. Thanks to the CCG’s help, we held extensive talks with interested parties and were delighted to hear that G DOC were willing to consider taking over the surgery’s contract. The pandemic delayed discussions but as of the 10th of January 2021 the Lydney Practice became a member of the G DOC family.
G DOC is a limited company that was created by Gloucestershire GPs in 2012 to bid for NHS contracts that were being put out to tender. All GP practices in Gloucestershire are shareholders and many GPs sit on the G DOC board of Directors. G DOC is run as a non-profit making organisation that helps to support local NHS services to remain sustainable, safe and well run. There is a lot more information about the organisation that can be found on their website (www.gdoc.org.uk).
I am incredibly grateful that G DOC agreed to take on the surgery contract, as otherwise the practice would have folded and there would have been a very real chance that the existing GPs would not want to work for the new contract holder.
There are many positives that come from being part of G DOC. We have already managed to recruit several new GPs thanks to the reputation of the organisation and G DOC have committed to building a brand-new state of the art premises for the practice within the next few years. We are also set to become a training hub for doctors and nurses that should mean future recruitment becomes much easier as we will attract ‘home grown talent’.
Until we have a full complement of staff, my wife and I are performing the oncall doctor shifts and processing the administrative work for all 7,600 patients. We cannot wait until we can resume routine clinics again and we hope that it shouldn’t be too long until this is possible. Please bear with us whilst we work hard at getting the practice fighting-fit and thank you for the patience that you have shown during the last year.
Dr Mark Hazell
(Joint Lead GP)