Jersey Co-operative GP services 'unsustainable'

Stethoscope on desk Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The care service is entering a consultation period to decide the future of its three surgeries.

GP services offered by the Channel Islands' Co-operative Society are at risk of being cut.

Co-operative Medical Care currently provides services to 8,000 people at three surgeries across Jersey.

It was first introduced in 2014 to offer affordable care for islanders, as well as dividends on GP payments.

The company said a shortage of GPs and unsustainable finances had forced it to enter a 70-day consultation period. A total of 25 jobs are at risk.

A final decision is expected to be made in late-April.

A GP consultation at one of the society's surgeries costs £39, compared to the average price of about £41.

'Struggled to grow'

In a statement the Co-operative said: "Unfortunately the society has not been able to register as many patients as were needed to sustain the model.

"Like many other GP practices in Jersey, the society has also struggled to grow the business as anticipated due to the island-wide issue of recruitment."

It confirmed it would also need to double the number of registered patients in order to continue its current model.

"We are focusing on ensuring that we minimise disruption for Co-operative Medical Care patients and will provide updates as and when we have them," chief executive Mark Cox said.

He confirmed all three practices would continue "as normal" until summer 2020.

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