GP surgery plans to expand

Draft plans for the extension to Heckington Surgery being proposed for approval by North Kesteven District Council. EMN-150607-160223001
Draft plans for the extension to Heckington Surgery being proposed for approval by North Kesteven District Council. EMN-150607-160223001

A GP practice with surgeries in Sleaford and Heckington is seeking to expand its premises to cope with growing pressure of patient numbers.

Subject to receiving planning approval from North Kesteven District Council, the scheme to extend Millview Medical Centre on Boston Road in Heckington could be completed and up and running by the end of March 2016.

Practice manager Marcus Griffen said the project is being partly funded by NHS England in response to expected population growth of the village and Sleaford.

He said: “There is a need for more patients to be seen, with the potential development of 500 new houses meaning an extra 1,500 patients in Heckington alone.

“The village and the surgery need this.”

The plan is to build a two storey extension on a grassed area between the existing building and the car park. It would provide two extra clinical rooms for doctors and practice staff, along with a new treatment room for nursing staff, freeing up the present treatment room for other purposes, including an extra waiting room. Mr Griffen said the dispensary would be rebuilt and redesigned to better serve elderly patients.

No parking space will be lost as they did not want patients to park on the busy road and a temporary staff car park during construction is being negotiated on part of an area of a neighbouring open space owned by the parish council.

In the long term, Mr Griffen said the practice may require extra staff, but the immediate plan is, once they have the extra rooms at Heckington, to bring some of the Sleaford office staff over to the village site and have most administration upstairs, freeing up space on the ground floors for clinical work.

He said they would eventually make the Sleaford surgery on Handley Street a branch site, although there would be no reduction in doctors and nurses based there.

The practice currently has four doctors and one regular locum, plus two nurse practitioners, 29 members of staff shared across the two sites in total. Mr Griffin said: ”Once we get everything up and running there may be the requirement to take on extra doctors, but we might be appointing some new members of staff in September/October.”

Mr Griffen went on: “We are applying to take over the neighbouring police office too and looking at what could be done with that.”

He said they have been working with the county highways department to clear the drainage ditches off Boston Road to reduce the waterlogging of their car park, and builders would clean out the drains and see how they could improve it further.