Welborne set to get health centre after a U-turn by provider

A CGI of Welborne
A CGI of Welborne

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A HEALTH centre will be built at new town Welborne after a U-turn by the service provider.

Fareham and Gosport Clinical Commissioning group had said it would not be possible to commit to the facility due to the cost.

But after talks with Fareham Borough Council, it has changed its mind.

The meeting – between Hampshire CCG Partnership chief executive Maggie MacIsaac, Dr David Chilvers, council leader Cllr Sean Woodward and chief executive officer Peter Grimwood – put the healthcare centre, including social services, nurses and doctors, back on the agenda.

Cllr Woodward said: ‘I’m delighted that we have agreed a way forward with the CCG that will bring a health and wellbeing hub to Welborne.

‘There are some exciting opportunities to develop innovative, hi-tech solutions in Welborne, which we hope will be attractive to new residents.’

He added: ‘We will hold CAT meetings with residents to find out what the people want.’

Chairman of the governing board Dr David Chilvers said: ‘The CCG is committed to ensuring local people have a range of high-quality, local health services to meet their needs.

‘New technology, an ageing 
population and a shortage of GPs means that we have to change the way that care is provided in the future to ensure that we can deliver that commitment.’

But Liberal Democrat, Cllr Shaun Cunningham is not convinced high-tech solutions are the answer.

He said: ‘What is not clear is will this new hub at Welborne have GPs on site or are we talking about something along the lines of video and audio calls to GPs sitting in some distant healthcare centre in Fareham or Wickham, which I expect is not what the majority of residents will be looking for.

‘Modern technology clearly needs to play a part in delivering modern healthcare, however, even today there is a large number of people who will not engage with technology.’

‘I welcome the special CAT meetings in providing that clarity and for the public to have a say.’

Previously the CCG wrote a letter to the council over the planning application for Welborne by Buckland Development.

It read: ‘While we appreciate that the Welborne plan states one or two primary care centres will be provided, we’re unable to commit finances or resource to the delivery of a facility which has the ability to destabilise existing primary care services in the area.’