Plans have been announced to merge two separate medical practices in Carlisle

SSP Health Ltd, the largest NHS GP Group in the North West, has proposed that Warwick Road Surgery and Fusehill Medical Practice will be merged under the new title of Central Carlisle Practice in April 2024.

This change will merge the contracts and practice systems together, but services will continue to be provided from both sites and patients will be able to access appointments at both sites. 

The existing practice boundaries will also remain unchanged.

During the Coronavirus pandemic, the two practices also 'became one' and registered patients were able to receive care from staff and clinicians associated with either practice. 

Proposed benefits to the merger include a greater choice of appointment times, a larger pool of GPs, other clinicians for patients and increased access. 

It is also suggested that 'well patients' will be separated from 'poorly patients' to try and reduce the spread of common ailments and infections. 

The main change for those registered at either Warwick Road Surgery or Fusehill Medical Practice is that you may need to go to a different location for a face-to-face appointment, depending on which health professional you need to see. 

SSP Health Ltd are considering moving clinics for screening, immunisations and vaccinations, chronic disease management (well patients) to one of the sites, while clinics will be held for those with ailments (poorly patients) at a separate site. 

However, there will still be times throughout the day where potentially unwell patients can be seen at either site. 

Both practices will remain open and will maintain their core opening hours of 8am until 6.30pm, and clinical and admin staff are also expected to remain the same. 

The two practice's websites and Facebook pages are also likely to combine. 

SSP Health Ltd is keen for feedback on the proposed merger and is holding a drop-in session at each practice on Wednesday, January 17 at 10am. 

It is also holding patient participation groups for both practices, and they are welcoming phone calls to either surgery if you want to discuss the proposed merger further.