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Campaign to save Wakefield NHS walk-in centre

Updated: Jul 15, 2022

Labour’s candidate for next month’s by-election Simon Lightwood and Shadow Health Secretary

Wes Streeting have launched a campaign to save Wakefield’s King Street Walk In Centre.

King Street Walk In Centre is under threat of closure this September, despite providing a lifeline for local residents, including those currently struggling to access GP appointments.

The campaign launch came as new figures published by the NHS reveal that Wakefield has 16 fewer GPs than a decade ago. NHS data published yesterday showed that the town has 230 qualified permanent GPs today, compared with 246 in 2013. Some local surgeries have as many as 2,600 patients per GP.

Since its opening in May 2009, the King Street Walk In Centre has helped ease pressure on local GP surgeries, pharmacies, and Pinderfields Hospital. However the NHS Wakefield Clinical Commissioning (CCG) group is currently consulting with local residents on how the service is used, and is yet to commit to renewing its contract beyond September 2022.

Before the 2019 general election, the Conservatives promised an additional 6,000 GPs, but the Health Secretary has since admitted the government is not on track to keep its promise.

Just two out of three GP appointments are offered face to face, with the rest offered over telephone, video or online.

Kings Street Walk In was previously threatened with closure back in 2017, but was saved following a campaign led by Wakefield’s previous Labour MP.

Simon Lightwood, Labour’s candidate for the Wakefield by-election said:

“As a proud NHS worker I know how important it is to have reliable health services that you can trust. The King Street Walk In Centre provides a lifeline to so many local residents, as more struggle to get a GP appointment and we see further pressures on our A&E services. It is imperative that we save it from closure.

“The Conservative government is running our health services into the ground. I will fight to keep the King Street Walk In open, and for the proper investment to restore our NHS and put the health of our communities first.

“It’s time for a fresh start for Wakefield, which has been let down by the Tories at a time when our hardworking communities need someone to fight for them.”

Wes Streeting MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, said:

“The Conservatives’ broken promises have left patients unable to get GP appointments when they need them.

“People are fed up with waiting weeks for an appointment. The closure of King Street Walk In Centre would only make things worse for local people.

“Labour will provide the staff, equipment, and modern technology needed to make our NHS fit for the future and get patients seen on time.”


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