Farron blasts NHS England bosses for not backing down on NHS service charges
Local MP Tim Farron has hit out at NHS England bosses for not backing down on proposed service charges.
Earlier this year, the Central Lakes Medical Group were hit with a proposed £25,000 increase in service charges at its Ambleside site because of a change in how the property of the NHS is managed.
Back in 2015, NHS Property Services Ltd (NHSPS) took ownership of many NHS Community and Primary Care buildings.
Since then surgeries throughout the country have seen a huge increase in service charges as NHSPS has changed the basis on which it charges surgeries including a 10% management fee for managing the costs of the building.
Tim wrote to NHS England asking them what is being done to address this serious drain on front line funding.
In their response, NHS England said they would be undertaking a joint review of a number of cases and said that some instances where surgeries are having to pay increased services charges were down to "inaccurate invoices".
But NHS England gave absolutely no assurances about the site at Ambleside, failing to mention the surgery even once in the entirety if their three-page long reply.
Tim said: "The proposed increase in service charges has left a dark cloud over the future of several of our local GP surgeries, and this pitiful response from the government has only made things more uncertain.
"They've failed to give any assurances that this frankly outrageous increase would be reversed and the fact that they didn't mention the site at Ambleside even once in their three-page long reply is a joke.
"The government must re-think these changes which will make it impossible for local surgeries, like Ambleside, to stay open which will leave rural communities up and down the country left without a vital local service."