GP surgeries' owner 'saddened' by criticisms of Wigan practices

A health firm which has been savagely criticised by whistleblowers over its GP practices in the borough has hit back at the unhappiness.

SSP Health said it was “saddened” by the criticisms levelled at Claire House in Ince and Leigh Family Practice.

Claire House in Ince run by SSP, where criticisms have been made by whistleblowers

Claire House in Ince run by SSP, where criticisms have been made by whistleblowers

Whistleblowers told the press staff were leaving in droves and morale was plummeting as the quality of service for patients fell.

SSP has responded strongly and urged anyone unhappy with their GP service to get in touch.

A spokesman said: “We are saddened by the comments made recently about two of the practices we have recently begun to manage.

“We always strive to provide the best possible care to patients and we couldn’t do this without the support of our dedicated staff.

“We pride ourselves on providing good-quality patient care that focuses on individual patient needs.

“We currently manage a number of other practices in the borough which have been rated as Good by the health regulator, CQC, with some of our other practices rated as Outstanding.

“At Leigh Family Practice there were some staff departures before we took on the contract. However, we have recruited new GPs, nurses and admin staff.

“We care very much that patients are happy with our practices, and it is most important that they get the right care. That is why in each practice, we have reviewed systems and processes, and have implemented new systems to ensure safe care.

“We are working with patients at Leigh Family Practice and the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to find out more about what we can do for them. For example, we have a patient group meeting there later this month.

“If patients do have any concerns about our practice, we would encourage them to speak to the practice manager who will always be happy to help. The practice also encourages patients to raise any issues with us via our complaints procedure. We cannot comment on any individual cases because of our duty of confidentiality.”

However, reviews on Google show the size of SSP’s task. The average rating for Leigh Family Practice is just 1.7.