GPs take Save our Surgeries campaign to Downing Street

East London GPs and supporters will take their campaign against practice funding cuts to Downing Street on Wednesday to hand over a petition signed by more than 21,000 people.

Save our Surgeries: protesters will take campaign to Downing Street
Save our Surgeries: protesters will take campaign to Downing Street

Campaigners from the Save Our Surgeries group will be joined by patients, practice staff and politicians to hand over the petition calling for a reversal of MPIG funding changes.

Campaigners believe more than 20 practices in three east London boroughs are at risk of closure due to MPIG withdrawal.

NHS England has identified 98 practices across the country that face losses of more than £3 per patient, which the BMA has said are all at risk.

MPIG practices face losses

Partners from Jubilee Street Practice in Tower Hamlets, one of the hardest-hit practices, facing losses over £900,000, will be in the delegation at Downing Street.

Jubilee Street GP Dr Naomi Beer said: ‘We’ve already taken pay cuts to try to keep going, but we can’t absorb such a huge loss. It breaks my heart to think that our patients, some of them among the poorest in the country, are at very real risk of losing their GP practice. We are asking the government to take action to ensure all practices receive a fair allocation of funds.’

Also in the delegation to Downing Street will be Rushanara Ali MP (Lab, Bethnal Green and Bow) and leader of Tower Hamlets Labour group councillor Rachel Saunders, and patient representative Myra Garrett.

GPC deputy chairman Dr Richard Vautrey will also join the group taking the protest to Downing Street.

Local council support

The campaign is also supported by the mayor of Tower Hamlets Lutfur Rahman and local Labour and Tower Hamlets First parties, and Hackney borough council.

Last week a patient at Jubilee Street launched a High Court bid to overturn the decision to withdraw MPIG funding. Lawyers for SOS campaign support Danny Currie, who has complex medical needs, said the policy was in breach of NHS England’s duty to have regard for equality of access and that the government had failed to properly consult.

Partners have written to patients telling them the practice will be closed in April unless NHS England can offer an adequate financial support package.

A senior official at NHS England London had said practices would be given details of financial support by Monday.

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