Independent GP group to take over Grangemouth clinic

A group of GPs with clinics in Lanarkshire and Ayrshire will soon be taking over the running of Grangemouth’s Kersiebank Medical Practice.

Known as the Forth Medical Group, the collective will also be taking on the responsibility of operating Hallpark practice in Sauchie and Bannockburn practice, near Stirling. The Kersiebank Avenue clinic has been under the management of NHS Forth Valley Health Board since 2015, when a number of GPs left or retired. The practice also experienced a major staffing crisis at the start of 2018 when it lost even more GPs, prompting an emergency recruitment exercise.

New operators Forth Medical Group, who were viewed by NHS Forth Vallley Health Board as the preferred bidders for the contract, are already responsible for three GP practices in Lanarkshire and two in Ayrshire, providing primary care services to more than 31,000 patients across Central Scotland.

According to NHS Forth Valley, the group has earned a reputation for “high quality, innovative and stable services”, tailored to the needs of local patients.

As well as providing GP consultations, they will work closely with other healthcare professionals such as advanced nurse practitioners, pharmacists, paramedics, mental health specialists and physiotherapists.

They also plan, over time, to introduce a range of other services such as pain clinics and walking groups..

The Health Board stated it has always aimed to transfer the three practices back into independent management as soon as possible and, with this in mind, undertook an open, competitive tendering exercise which attracted interest from a number of GP groups.

NHS Forth Valley said confirmed there will be no job losses as a result of this new contract, which it stated will be in place by March this year when the 46 staff currently employed by NHS Forth Valley across the three practices will be eligible to transfer to work with the new GP group.

Dr Stuart Cumming, NHS Forth Valley associate medical director, said: “Transferring the management of these three practices back to GPs is a very positive development which will provide long-term sustainability, continuity of care for local patients and release resources which can be reinvested by the Health Board to develop local services.”

Dr Usman Rehman, Forth Medical Group, added: “We are looking forward to working with the existing staff and other local health and social care professionals to provide a high standard of primary care services to the patient population across the three Practices.

“We are also keen to explore opportunities to develop new and innovative services.”