Health bosses come under fire over polyclinic plan

Posted on January 25, 2010. Filed under: News stories, Polyclinics |

Ilford Recorder | ZJAN SHIRINIAN | 25 January 2010

THE Redbridge health roadmap was torn apart by an angry councillor who warned the borough would be lumbered with five run down polyclinics if it pressed ahead with plans to build more of the super surgeries.

Fairlop Polyclinic is one of four new health centres set to be built over the next four years to go alongside the existing Loxford Polyclinic, Ilford Lane, Ilford.

But the centres – housing GPs and a host of other specialist health services – are sparking unease.

At a coffee morning hosted by campaign group Barkingside 21 on Thursday, residents had the chance to grill Rob Meaker, chief officer for the Fairlop Polysystem, and Adrienne Noon, head of communications and marketing for NHS Redbridge.

In an angry outburst, Conservative Cllr Loraine Sladden – who was at the meeting in Fullwell Cross Library, High Street, Barkingside – warned building more polyclinics would be a mistake.

She said: “If you’re hell bent on polyclinics, at least get Loxford right first of all.

“A good business wouldn’t open another company if they have problems with the first one.

“Do it over three years and then come back if it works.

“Otherwise we will be left with five run-down polyclinics.”

Mrs Noon said: “Loxford has teething problems like any new entity.

“There are issues with the walk-in side of things and we are addressing those.”

She also told residents Fairlop Polyclinic, which would also serve Fullwell, Barkingside, Clayhall and Hainault, would be unable to house every health service, meaning some may have to travel further for medical care.

She said: “What we’re trying to do is say if there is a prevalence for this thing or that, lets provide for that in the closest polyclinic.”

She also denied suggestions doctors would be forced to close and move into the new super surgery.

The proposed closure of King George Hospital’s A&E was another topic at the meeting.

People raised concerns about the “complexity” of the public consultation’s questions and appointment waiting times.

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