Willow Surgery and Christchurch Family Medical Centre are pleased to announce that from April 2018 they will be merging to form a new organisation called The Downend Health Group.

For many years, the two practices have worked side by side to provide medical services to the local population and we now believe that working together as one organisation will put us in the best position to adapt and grow.

Continuity of care is very important to us.  The high quality medical care that we already deliver will not change.  However, by merging, we will be in a position to expand our services and diversify what we are able to offer our patients.  We will have more training opportunities for our staff and will encourage members of the team to pursue their career aspirations. We will also expand the teaching and training on offer in the practice to include not only doctors and medical students but other health care professionals.

The two practices are working closely together to form this organisation, ensuring that we share the best from each other to develop processes robust enough to manage the increasing pressure and demands experienced within primary care.  By bringing our individual strengths together, we are confident that we can develop and adapt to make us stronger and put us in a better position to address the challenges that the NHS faces at this current time. A shadow executive board has been appointed to lead the merger process. This board is made up of Dr Simons, Dr Richmond and Lynn Garraway (Practice Manager) from Willow Surgery and Dr Sivayokan, Dr Green and Karen Hayward (Operational Manager) from Christchurch.

We recognize that the merger process and the new organisation may well have an impact on the patients registered with us.  We want to include you in this process, listen to your views, take into account your opinions and work with you to build a bigger, better organisation with firm foundations. We are therefore having a period of consultation where patients from either practice can have their say.  For example: what do you value about the current services offered to you?  By working together, what improvements could be made for you?

Your thoughts are important to us.  Please contact the patient services managers, between 30th November and 14th December 2017 on dhg.mergerprocess@nhs.net  or post your comments in the boxes provided at both practice receptions.

We will keep you updated as things progress.  Regular communication will be made through patient newsletters, patient information boards and through our websites. Our teams look forward to sharing this exciting venture with you and thank you for your continued support.



All GP practices are required to declare the mean earnings (e.g. Average pay) for GPs working to deliver NHS services to patients at each practice.  This is required in the interests of the greater public accountability recognising GP pay is ultimately funded from the tax paid by the public.

The average pay for GPs working in  Christchurch Family Medical Centre in the last financial year was £61,218 before tax and national insurance.  This is for 5 full time GPS,3 part time GPs and 0 locum GPs who worked in the practice for more than six months



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