The closure of GP practices has left hundreds of patients without a family doctor.

Health chiefs at Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) raised concerns about 500 people who have not yet registered with a surgery following the retirement of Greenhead based Dr Gowa.

The closure comes just a few months after Dr Reddy, also based in Greenhead, also retired and closed his practice.

And it was revealed a further GP practice closure in north Kirklees had left 1,500 patients in limbo without a doctor, with 1,000 still to re-register.

Jan Giles, the CCG’s Head of Practice Support and Development, said NHS England wrote to patients with recommendations but did not automatically re-register them.

“They are looking at whether they should just tell these patients where to go,” she said.

“But this does represent new pressure on other practices.”

At the governing body meeting of GHCCG, GP, Dr David Hughes, said: “The risk is if we’ve got inadequate provision in primary care (GPs) the patients will turn up at A&E and at out-of-hours services, which are more expensive.”

Huddersfield GP, Dr Dil Ashraf, whose Fitzwilliam Street practice is one of the closest to the two closed in Greenhead, said the additional patients from closing practices were causing his staff a lot of extra work.

Rory Deighton Director at patients’ rights group, Healthwatch Kirklees, said poor communication was at the root of the problem.

Health Watch Kirklees Director Rory Deighton
Health Watch Kirklees Director Rory Deighton
 

He said: “We recognise that GP practices close. Sometimes this is a contracting issue and sometimes it is as simple as a GP retiring.

“What is important is that changes are communicated to patients early so they have time to find a new GP.

“1,500 patients from School House Practice in Dewsbury had less than four weeks written notice from NHS England that their practice was closing.

“This is not good enough and we have expressed our concerns to NHS England in Leeds.”