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Plan for more GPs

PUBLISHED: 09:22 26 March 2009 | UPDATED: 13:27 03 July 2010

Patients in Yarmouth and Waveney are set to benefit from more doctors, longer opening hours at surgeries and cuts in waiting times for treatment.

A new five-year health strategy for the area aims to deliver the “fastest rate of health improvement in England” and to reduce inequalities in life expectancy in the district.

Patients in Yarmouth and Waveney are set to benefit from more doctors, longer opening hours at surgeries and cuts in waiting times for treatment.

A new five-year health strategy for the area aims to deliver the “fastest rate of health improvement in England” and to reduce inequalities in life expectancy in the district.

The final draft plan, approved yesterday by the board of NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney, will also see efforts made to move care closer to people's homes and increased investment in preventative health programmes including weight management and help to give up smoking.

The trust's chief executive Mike Stonard said of the strategy: “It is an ambitious plan to address the health needs of this area through clear, targeted, evidence based actions. It sets four clear goals to improve health status, reduce health inequalities, improve access to services and increase public satisfaction with their experience of our services.”

One of the strategic priorities outlined is to move care closer to people's homes while delivering more care in primary or community settings. There will also be extra GPs for the area and new dental practices targeted at more deprived areas.

The strategy states: “These developments will also enable us to address GP workforce pressures. As well as the increased levels planned for 2009/10 (three additional GPs/primary care practitioners, which will operate from the Great Yarmouth GP-led health centre and three additional GPs/primary care practitioners for Lowestoft) we propose a further four additional GPs across the Yarmouth and Waveney areas during 2010/11, making a total of 10 across the PCT area by the end of that year.

“We will also develop GP walk-in services in Lowestoft. The centre will provide a greater ranger of services than the Great Yarmouth GP-led health centre, and will include diagnostics and outpatient and day surgery facilities as well as prevention services.”

Firm proposals for the Lowestoft walk-in centre will be developed by March 2010, for implementation in 2010/11.

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