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Merged Southwark GP practice will be London’s largest

Plans to create London's biggest GP practice - with more than 60,000 registered patients across North Southwark - have been approved by local NHS bosses.

The Aylesbury Partnership, Bermondsey and Lansdowne Medical Mission, Princess Street Group Practice and the Walworth Partnership have more than over 60,000 patients across eight sites in SE1, SE17, SE5 and SE15.

Their plan to come together to form a single organisation was approved by NHS England (London) and NHS Southwark Clinical Commissioning Group on Thursday night during a meeting of the primary care joint committee at Millwall Football Club.

Dr Amr Zeineldine, GP at the Aylesbury Partnership, said: "Practices have been speaking to patients and staff about the proposal since January and it has their support.

"By working together we can continue to give patients the personal service they want from their practice but also offer them a wider range of services.

"Our rising local population goes hand in hand with increased patient demand so it makes sense to combine our efforts to ensure we can deliver high quality care in the long term."

In a statement, NHS England (London) and NHS Southwark CCG said: "As the first port of call for the vast majority of people in need of healthcare, it is our absolute priority to make sure local GP services can deliver the best possible care to a growing number of patients.

"This positive move demonstrates that Southwark practices are leading the way in planning innovative ways to give patients a better service."

The merger is expected to take effect this summer.

Although the merged practice will initially continue to operate from all eight surgeries, the business case for the merger presented to commissioners this week set out the prospect of "consolidation of existing sites into a small number of purpose built and geographically appropriate site(s)".

It also noted that "Princess Street Group Practice has been identified as requiring additional space to meet population growth in the Elephant & Castle area".

The combined GP practice will produce an estates strategy during its first year.

The full business case for the merger is available on the NHS Southwark CCG website.

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