Plans for new GP surgery in Eccleston collapse

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Health chiefs in St Helens say they hope to rehouse an medical centre “as soon as possible” after plans for a new practice collapsed.

Eccleston Medical Centre has been treating patients in a portable building in a church car park for several year.

It was due to move to a new home in the Eccleston Grange development next to Sainsburys.

However, NHS bosses say “extensve time delays” mean that is no longer possible.

Professor Sarah O’Brien, clinical chief executive at NHS St Helens CCG said: “NHS Merseyside approved plans for Eccleston Medical Centre to have a new surgery in 2012, which should have been completed by 2013.

“However, because of the extensive time delays with this plan, NHS St Helens CCG now has to re-approve this decision and since the original agreement the practice’s plans have developed and they are now seeking permission for a larger building which is significantly more expensive than existing costs.

“The CCG absolutely agrees that the practice needs re-housing but the plans need to be in proportion with the number of registered patients at the practice and given the financial challenges of the CCG and health services locally it also has to be affordable.

“The CCG was therefore unable to approve the current plans but will work with and support the practice to re-house Eccleston Medical Centre as soon as possible.”