Holly Hall campaigners launch petition to fight walk-in centre closure plan

Dudley News: Labour's Natasha Millward is calling on people to sign a petition calling for Holly Hall Wailk-In center to be saved Labour's Natasha Millward is calling on people to sign a petition calling for Holly Hall Wailk-In center to be saved

A CAMPAIGN to save a Dudley medical centre got a shot in the arm following the launch of a new petition.

The Holly Hall walk-in centre is under threat from a proposal by Dudley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) not to renew its contract next year.

A consultation process is open until Christmas Eve on a plan to extend borough GP services and and create an urgent care centre in Russells Hall.

Natasha Millward, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Dudley South, said: “People don’t just need health services in office hours. We can’t always juggle commitments to get to our GP surgery. That’s why the last Labour government introduced walk-in centres.

“If Holly Hall is closed, more people will have no alternative but to go to overstretched A&E departments.”

The Keep Our Walk-In campaign launched a petition on December 6 at the health centre on Stourbridge Road. The petition has the backing of Dudley North MP, Ian Austin.

Mr Austin said: “Just like everyone in Dudley, we’ve used the walk-in centre at Holly Hall when we’ve needed a doctor out-of-hours.

“Any change to local services has to make improving care and treating local people the top priority, but this consultation gives no guarantee that services will be maintained if the walk-in centre is closed.

“I want local people to sign our petition and send a clear message that they don’t want the centre closed.”

The CCG argues the current urgent care system is too complicated and patients get better treatment from their own GP.

They also say people are twice as likely to be referred to the already overstretched emergency department at Russells Hall Hospital if they attend the Holly Hall clinic.

More information on the proposal is available via the CCG’s website, the anti-closure petition can be accessed via natashamillward.org.uk

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