Kelvedon: Patients bid to save job of popular doctor Conor Macnamara

AN Essex MP has taken a campaign to save a long-standing GP’s job to the Houses of Parliament.

Dr Conor Macnamara is being forced to leave his practice in Kelvedon after 25 years of service.

The move has prompted a backlash from villagers and patients who protested outside the Brimpton House Surgery last Monday.

Now, Witham MP Priti Patel has taken the issue to the House of Commons where she criticised the Primary Care Trust overseeing the surgery and called for Dr Macnamara to continue working there.

Up until 2003, Dr Macnamara, 52, was the main partner at the surgery. He stepped down from the role when he fell ill and continued to work as a GP.

Under the guidance of Mid Essex Primary Care Trust, the practice was handed over to Dr Abdul Alsayed, who issued a letter to patients at the end of last year notifying them of the decision to remove Dr Macnamara. Braintree District councillor for Kelvedon, Tom Foster, is leading the Patient Action Group.

He claimed Dr Macnamara only found out about the news after his wife, who is a patient at the surgery, received one of the letters and rang to inform him on Christmas Eve while he was on holiday in Ireland.

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It is understood the decision was made on financial grounds.

During her parliamentary speech, Ms Patel said: “It is deeply alarming to see how one GP in my constituency is being treated. Dr Conor Macnamara has served the people of Kelvedon for a quarter of a century and is currently a salaried GP at the Brimpton House surgery in Kelvedon.

“He has been a stalwart of our local community, and whole families throughout the locality respect and trust him.”

Commenting afterwards, she said: “It’s time for the Primary Care Trust and Brimpton House Surgery to listen to the people of Kelvedon, who are fighting a strong campaign in support of Dr Macnamara.”

Mr Foster said it was a “most unfortunate” situation, adding: “It’s a shame that the PCT has not so far stepped in to resolve this matter.”

A spokesman from NHS North Essex, which now oversees the surgery, said: “We quite understand the feelings of those who benefit from the services of Dr Macnamara at Brimpton House.

“In order for Dr Macnamara to continue working at Brimpton House, there must be an agreement with the practice led by Dr Alsayed. Without such an agreement, there is no authority in the NHS that can impose this arrangement.

“We are discussing these matters personally and confidentially with Dr Macnamara; however, to reiterate, the employment of Dr Macnamara at Brimpton House is a matter for the practice and Dr Macnamara to agree, and not within the control of the PCT.”

Yesterday a member of staff from Brimpton House Surgery said Dr Alsayed did not wish to comment.

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