Thousands of patients lose GP as Sunderland surgery closes

Monkwearmouth Health Centre, Dundas Street, Sunderland
Monkwearmouth Health Centre, Dundas Street, Sunderland
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PATIENTS at a Sunderland GP practice are looking for a new doctor after their surgery closed.

The Echo reported earlier this year that the future of Wearside Medical Practice, in Dundas Street, Monkwearmouth, was under threat.

Those registered with the Monkwearmouth Health Centre-based surgery were sent a letter saying a review of the service found that only a “low number of patients” were on its books, despite 2,000 people using it regularly.

Following a consultation process, the surgery closed at the end of last month.

Dr Karthik Gelia and Dr Balaraman’s surgery, which is also housed at Monkwearmouth Health Centre, is unaffected by the development and there are no plans to close the centre itself either.

Dr Mike Prentice, medical director, Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, in NHS England, said: “The Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear area team is responsible for commissioning GP services in the local area.

“The area team has reviewed GP services at Wearside Medical Practice and feedback received from patients and stakeholders has been analysed. Following the review, the area team has concluded that the practice is no longer sustainable with the current number of patients registered and closed on September 26.

“We appreciate the closure of the practice is worrying for patients and would like to assure them that there are practices very close to Wearside Medical Practice where they can register.

“We have written to all patients and stakeholders to advise on how to register with another GP practice.

“Our main priority is to ensure that patients continue to have access to high-quality GP services.”