Ipswich patients want action at surgery where doctors 'work through the night'
- Credit: Kirsty Youngs/Archant/ Gregg Brown
Nearly 50 patients have backed a campaign for action on Ipswich's super surgery where doctors "work through the night" to deliver medical care.
"Grave concerns" have been expressed about the ability of Cardinal Medical Practice, made up of Chesterfield Drive, Norwich Road and Deben Road GP surgeries, to "safeguard the health and wellbeing of patients".
In a letter addressed to the manager of Cardinal Medical Practice, Eunice Ifionu, 49 patients sympathised with the super surgery looking after an estimated 30,000 Ipswich residents - the biggest in the town.
They also explained they have ended up in A&E because they could not be seen, spend hours calling to get no appointment, and have repeat prescriptions delayed or have issues with what they receive.
Kirsty Youngs, leading the campaign for action, said: "As patients, we have grave concerns about the service offered by the surgery, and feel these issues need to be addressed in order to safeguard the health and wellbeing of your patients.
"Personally, I have noticed test results uploaded onto SystemOnline at gone midnight some nights. So, I know there are doctors at the practice who are working even through the night when they should normally be enjoying time off, and for that, I thank them."
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She also said the "face of the practice", the receptionists, "unfairly face the brunt of patients’ frustrations and anger".
But she said patients feel: "Something needs to be done urgently. Failing that, an investigation needs to be launched to see exactly what has gone so wrong. The safety of patients is being put at risk, and 17 months following the [unofficial] merger [which officially started in July] there should not be the issues that there are.
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"There seems to be no end in sight, and people are afraid, frustrated, angry and despondent."
Over 330 patients have also started a Facebook group called Cardinal Medical Practice Chaos to keep people updated on the situation.
A spokesman for the Cardinal Practice previously said in August they understand patients' frustrations and "apologise".
He added: “We are doing everything we can to resolve the situation, including recruiting more staff. All our staff are working very hard.”
Cardinal Practice was contacted again following this letter.