Cumbernauld’s MSP launches Out of Hours survey



Written by Scott Campbell, Cumbernauld Media's Senior Reporter.

Published at 10:48 on 8 March 2015


NHS    Politics    SNP



Services may be withdrawn from Cumbernauld Central Health Centre. Picture: courtesy of Bill Henry.

CUMBERNAULD and Kilsyth’s SNP Member of the Scottish Parliament is inviting concerned local residents to take part in his survey into proposals by NHS Lanarkshire to overhaul the existing out of hours care services.

In January 2015, NHS Lanarkshire launched a consultation on two service models: one primary care out-of-hours centre at Douglas Street Community Health Clinic in Hamilton; or two primary care out-of-hours centres one of which would be in Airdrie Community Health Centre and the other in Douglas Street Community Health Clinic, Hamilton.

The launch of the consultation – which runs until April 16 – followed an extensive review of the Out Of Hours Service with a wide range of stakeholders that has taken place over the past year, with the two models being consulted upon developed with a range of patients, carers and staff who were involved in the review process. 

At present, patients would call the service can get an appointment at one of the out-of-hours centres in Lanarkshire – in any of the emergency departments at Wishaw General, Monklands and Hairmyres Hospitals. The two previous satellite centres at Central Health Centre, Cumbernauld, and Lanark Health Centre, however, have not been open since June 2014 given the current lack of GPs available to work in the service.

Since the launch of the consultation, Cumbernauld’s MP and Cumbernauld’s MSP have locked horns over the important local issue with the former claiming that the latter is putting his ministerial position before the needs of local people. 

Gregg McClymont, Labour MP for Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East has called for Jamie Hepburn, SNP MSP for Cumbernauld and Kilsyth to “put his constituents before his Ministerial career”, and perhaps even “resign from the SNP Government if the closure of Cumbernauld’s Out of Hours GP service in Cumbernauld goes ahead.”

The Labour man has since launched an online petition calling on the Scottish Government to “intervene to keep essential Out of Hours GP services in Cumbernauld”, despite the matter currently being consulted upon by NHS Lanarkshire with a Scotland-wide review ongoing into out of hours care services.

Jamie Hepburn, SNP MSP for Cumbernauld and Kilsyth, meanwhile, has hit back at his political opponent, and has launched an extensive survey to gauge the exact views of local residents towards the proposals being consulted upon by the health. 

In a statement via his website, the MSP said: “As you might already be aware, the Out of Hours service at Central Health Centre, Cumbernauld has not been available since last June. At the time there was no indication that this would be a permanent withdrawal of the service. Now NHS Lanarkshire is consulting on further changes which would see the withdrawal of that service be made permanent.”

Commenting, the SNP MSP said he was “keen to learn” the views of local constituents into the matter so he could “communicate local opinion directly to NHS Lanarkshire.”

Please be assured that such views would only be used by my office in pursuit of this specific matter and not shared with any irrelevant third parties.

Mr Hepburn’s online survey – which can be accessed here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/CD9D758 - comes ahead of a public consultation being organised by NHS Lanarkshire.

Being held on Tuesday 10th March between 6.30pm until 8.30pm in the Cumbernauld Town Hall, Bron Way, Cumbernauld, G67 1DZ, the meeting will be a chance for local residents to learn more about the proposals and put their views across to a panel from NHS Lanarkshire.

Further details on the proposals being considered by NHS Lanarkshire are available here: http://www.nhslanarkshire.org.uk/INVOLVED/CONSULTATION/OOH/Pages/HaveYourSay.aspx