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Patients at a practise have shared their frustration after learning that one their GPs is working remotely – almost 300 miles away from their surgery. The GP in question relocated to Cornwall, CornwallLive reports.
The Telegraph reported this week that Dr Justine Hall, one of three doctors listed as working at Rudgwick Medical Centre in Horsham, West Sussex, now conducts consultations online after moving to Falmouth, around 265 miles away.
The surgery’s website states: “Dr Justine Hall grew up nearby in Godalming and attended Guildford High School before studying medicine at the University of Southampton. She worked in Hampshire and Dorset in hospital roles before becoming a GP partner in Fareham. She moved back to Guildford in 2015 and has been working locally ever since.”
CornwallLive called the surgery to speak to Dr Hall or one of her colleagues and was greeted by a phone message saying “This is Dr Hall” who then went on to say that the surgery was “experiencing very high demand for our services”.
An anonymous patient told The Telegraph she thought it was “outrageous” that Dr Hall is able to continue working from the other side of the country. She said: “I was staggered when I was told she had moved to Cornwall. They are only offering remote appointments. For some diagnoses you need to see someone, and yet they think it’s ok to have the number two doctor in the practice living in Cornwall. It’s just outrageous.”
The newspaper reported that Dr Hall had recently commented on Facebook about the closure of Ships and Castles swimming pool in Falmouth. Another patient, Olivia Shepley, said: “We were told Dr Hall had moved to Cornwall by a friend. I can’t believe there is a GP on staff who is living in another part of the country – that’s not treatment.”
A spokesman for Rudgwick Medical Centre told The Telegraph: “We aim to provide the very best care for our patients. If any patients have concerns about any aspect of their care, we would encourage them to contact us directly so we can investigate their concerns through our complaints procedure. For a number of years our commissioners and NHS England have supported remote working in our area.”
CornwallLive has contacted the surgery for a comment from Dr Hall or one of her colleagues.
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