Cranfield and Marston Surgery is "not an easy fix"

Council committee told that BCCG is “more than aware of the issues” in Cranfield

Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (BCCG) chief operating officer, Mike Thompson gave a presentation to Central Bedfordshire Council’s Social Care, Health and Housing Overview and Scrutiny Committee today (3 June 2019).

He was there to give a brief overview of the work BCCG carries out and the NHS Long Term Plan.

After Mr Thompson concluded his presentation, Cllr Mark Smith (Ampthill – Independent) asked about universal coverage in Central Bedfordshire, specifically in terms of the days of the week that residents have access to GP’s. Cllr Smith said:

“The example I would give is Cranfield, where I’m aware that residents do not have five-days-a-week coverage.

“But where I live in Ampthill, we do have that coverage, and indeed, and on Saturday’s.”

In response, Mr Thompson said that BCCG is more than aware of the issues at Cranfield and Marston and that last week he had a meeting with the local MP on this issue.

He added that patients do have universal coverage as they can access the other site of the general practice. He said that he was “acutely aware” that this was not the case at Cranfield on certain days of the week.

Money to expand Marston site

The Committee was told that there have been some Section 106 contributions to improve and expand the capacity at the Marston site. Mr Thompson said:

“We have got some active plans around that to try and make it better, but it is not a quick fix or an easy fix.

“It is a specific problem and you have rightly highlighted it.”

Mr Thompson offered to return to the Committee to provide a briefing or a discussion around Cranfield and Marston.

Cranfield land owned by NHS

The Chronicle contacted BCCG after the meeting to ask why it was looking for a new site when the NHS owned land in Braeburn Way. A spokesperson said:

“Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group and Central Bedfordshire Council are working with a developer who has planning permission for additional housing in Cranfield.

“This planning permission has a requirement for a GP surgery premises linked to the proposed house build programme and final details will be incorporated as part of a Section 106 agreement. The time-frames for this project are yet to be determined.

“The future use of the Flitt Leys site, which is also referred to as the Braeburn site, is part of ongoing discussions with NHS Property Services who own the land.”