A public meeting is due to take place on Wednesday night concerning health care provision in the Waringstown and Donaghcloney area.
It comes just a week after the surgery in Donaghcloney cancelled their morning drop in surgeries with doctors in favour of an appointment system. A drop in treatment room operated by practice nurses remains in place between 9am and 10.30am each morning.
Prior to the meeting the DUP team have encouraged the public to rally behind GP surgeries.
Speaking on behalf of her party Councillor Carla Lockhart said: “We must not put our local surgeries under intense scrutiny by the media and the trust because of one or two complaints abpout waiting times.
“We must look at the situation holistically and not finger point on specific issues. The health care that Donaghacloney Surgery gives is second to none. It is free at the point of delivery and the customer service is impeccable. Yes, there are difficulties with the size of the practice, the facilities and the need for expansion but this is something over time we can work towards addressing.”
“What we must do is work proactively and rally behind our GP surgeries particularly in rural areas to aid and help them in developing their facilities. We have taken the opportunity to meet with the Practice Manager and listen to the concerns the constraints they are under and the rationale behind the moving their entire surgery facility to Donaghcloney and whilst we were disappointed at this move, we have in the background been actively lobbying the Department and ascertaining as to whether or not a new practitioner in Waringstown would be viable.”
“The location of GP surgeries is purely at the discretion of the practitioners and therefore what we have to create is the environment and the business case to say that another new facility would be viable with a totally new entity.
“Whilst this work is ongoing we must recognise the service that the Doctors and practice staff are giving day and daily to the Donaghcloney, Waringstown, Moira and the Banbridge area.”