Staff jubilant as £1m Cowplain health centre gets ready to open doors

OPEN Left to right are Nurse Rachel Doherty, Dr Tim Wright, receptionists Janie Clissett and Emily Dallas, Dr Nicola Millen, Dr Emma Bridger, Dr Mike Johns and practice manager Karen Jeffries.   Picture: Malcolm Wells (113492-806)
OPEN Left to right are Nurse Rachel Doherty, Dr Tim Wright, receptionists Janie Clissett and Emily Dallas, Dr Nicola Millen, Dr Emma Bridger, Dr Mike Johns and practice manager Karen Jeffries. Picture: Malcolm Wells (113492-806)

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HEALTHCARE in the Waterlooville area is set to be transformed as a £1m medical centre prepares to open its doors.

After a year of construction work, the state-of-the-art three-storey health centre in Padnell Road, Cowplain, will open next Monday.

The ground floor, with 10 consulting rooms, will be the new home of Cowplain Family Practice.

For years patients, doctors and nurses have had to put up with the cramped conditions in the adjacent surgery – which cost just £2,000 to build.

The new building has a waiting room for up to 50 patients and two more GPs are being taken on.

Blood clinics will also start up again.

The practice’s business manager Karen Jeffries said: ‘This is the end of a long struggle for us.

‘We’ve been fighting for this for eight years. We’ve been working in very cramped conditions.

‘We can now continue to provide an excellent service from a modern healthcare facility.’

The building will be much more than a GP practice.

The top floor, set to open in January, will provide NHS and private dentistry, with capacity for up to 15,000 patients.

The first floor will become Cowplain Healthspace, with 13 consulting rooms offering a range of outpatient facilities, including physiotherapy, minor surgery, and diagnostics including X-ray, MRI scans and ultrasound.

Health officials say the scheme, being run by Best Practice South, is a model of future healthcare and is set to cater for both private and NHS patients.

Operational manager of Cowplain Healthspace Julieanne Page said it will take the strain off Queen Alexandra Hospital.

She said: ‘We are absolutely drowning in stuff that could be done in the community.

‘These types of developments are a Godsend to patients.

‘The development has seemed to take forever, and now it’s happening, it’s exciting.’

Cowplain Healthspace is set to open by the end of the year.

On Saturday, October 15, there is an open day from 9am to midday where patients and members of the public will be able to have a look round the new building.

Mrs Page is keen to hear from any practitioners interested in using space.

Email her at julieanne.page@housdengroup.co.uk or call 07847 949482.

There is also a dance/fitness studio available for use.