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Eight months on, still no advert for Kilcreggan GP post

Publication: The Lochside Press

Eight months after the last contracted GP on the Rosneath Peninsula resigned, the post has still not been advertised and residents, now reliant on doctors as far as eight miles away, are left wondering why the position remains vacant.

Kilcreggan Medical Centre, courtesy of The Lochside Press

Eight months after the last contracted GP on the Rosneath Peninsula resigned, the post has still not been advertised.

Dr Oliver Corbett announced last August that he was leaving the Kilcreggan Medical Practice, meaning it would be entirely reliant on locum doctors – as is the surgery eight miles away in Garelochhead.

At the time a spokesperson for Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership said they were ‘absolutely committed’ to the Kilcreggan practice, adding: “We are progressing recruitment for a salaried post.”

In December there was no sign of progress though, with the HSCP saying: “We are currently working through the recruitment and marketing process at the moment for the Kilcreggan practice.

“We hope to market the practice in the new year.”

This week however it emerged that the post has still not been advertised, with the spokesperson saying: “It hasn’t been advertised yet but hopefully will be marketed soon.”

No reason was given for the lack of progress.

MSP Jackie Baillie, whose Dumbarton constituency includes the Rosneath Peninsula, said: “I am aware of ongoing difficulties with recruitment and retention of GPs on the peninsula, which is part of a wider national problem.

“I have previously raised this matter with NHS Highland on behalf of residents and have received assurances that the board was working to minimise the impact on patients and to attract new GPs to the area.

“However, recent developments in the wider delivery of services in Helensburgh and Lomond, including the lapse in provision of women’s and sexual health services, appear to reveal that NHS Highland is struggling to maintain services.

“A clear plan is now needed to stabilise services going forward, including having sustainable GP services on the peninsula.”

-MSP Jackie Baillie

Dr Corbett started in Kilcreggan in May 2021, working 2.5 days a week, and announced his resignation in August.

His departure followed that of Dr Donal Murray, who resigned in May 2022, with his post being advertised four months afterwards.

The Kilcreggan and Garelochhead practices are now both run directly by NHS Highland.