Rethink calls over new surgery plans

CAMPAIGNERS have called for an immediate rethink on plans for a brand new doctors' surgery in north Essex.Patients in Great Clacton and Holland on Sea have been left in limbo in the past few years as they wait for a new health centre to be built in Kennedy Way, Clacton.

CAMPAIGNERS have called for an immediate rethink on plans for a brand new doctors' surgery in north Essex.

Patients in Great Clacton and Holland on Sea have been left in limbo in the past few years as they wait for a new health centre to be built in Kennedy Way, Clacton.

The multi-million pound state-of-the-art development was to replace four outdated doctors' surgeries.

But earlier this year the project was put on hold while reports into the plans were completed and this week health bosses admitted they had miscalculated the amount of patients who would be using a new centre.


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Although Kennedy Way remains the preferred choice, North East Essex Primary Care Trust (PCT) has said it cannot guarantee that will remain the case.

Its chief executive, Paul Zollinger-Read, said two recent developments - the Colchester primary care centre and Harwich hospital, were both too big and he was not prepared to face the same problem again.

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Investigations into potential buildings are to be made this summer before any development goes ahead.

But Hugh Morrison, chairman of the Holland on Sea Residents' Action Group, has now called for two new surgeries instead of Kennedy Way.

He said: “The four surgeries should have been updated by October 2003 and they are no longer acceptable.

“It is clear that Kennedy Way is an absolute disaster and there is no way that it is affordable. We are going to be putting a letter together asking for two sites - one good surgery for each area for the needs of local people.

“We are not prepared to wait any longer, we have been waiting since 2003 for the surgeries to be updated.”

Speaking to the EADT this week, Mr Zollinger Read said he hoped the issue would soon be resolved.

He said: “We have built two big buildings that have turned out to have many, many, problems with them and I don't want a third building.

“Hopefully we will be moving forward with this. Anyone can put up a health centre, but making it successful and work for the community is the important thing,” he said.

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