Methlick GP surgery shuts its doors
IT has been confirmed that the Methlick branch of the Haddo Medical Group will not reopen.
The surgery was closed temporarily in 2018 while a solution to ongoing staffing issues was sought. However the decision has been taken to close the surgery permanently.
Prior to the temporary closure last year, the Methlick GP surgery provided seven-and-a-half hours of appointment time each week.
The building which the surgery ran from only had one consulting room and limited internet access meaning that only one practitioner could operate from the building at a time.
The temporary closure was agreed to alleviate pressure on the staff at the surgery who were having to cover appointments across two sites with a reduced number of GPs and other suitably-trained staff.
Executive partner of Haddo Medical Group Dr Fiona Munro, said: "It has been a really difficult decision for everyone at the surgery but in the circumstances, it is the right one.
The closure has meant that we have been able to consolidate our services at the main site which means that we are better able to continue offering a safe and secure service for all of our patients.
Aberdeenshire Health and Social Care Partnership's Kimberley Menzies added: "The local health and social care team have been working closely with the practice and local community groups to look at ways we can support the Methlick community following the closure of the branch surgery.
"We held a public event earlier in the year where residents were able to come along to let us know about the impact of the closure on them."
Following consultation with the public earlier in the year, an open session was held in the village's Beaton Hall on Monday to allow residents affected by the closure the opportunity to voice their concerns.
Speaking to the Advertiser at the event, Mrs Menzies said: "People are disappointed, but have been largely accepting of the decision to close the Methlick surgery.
"There really is a great community here, and it's been reassuring to see people to keen to help each other out."
The biggest issue raised was about accessing the Haddo Medical Group branch in Pitmedden due to irregular public transport services.
A number of residents have offered their services to taxi people to and from appointments, and the partnership are also looking into options within Aberdeenshire Council to provide a service which would ensure that those who need to see a doctor were able to attend the surgery in Pitmedden.