Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust will take on the provision of services at two Swindon GP practices previously managed by the Integral Medical Holdings Group (IMH).

The Trust is expected to take on the management of Abbey Meads Medical Group and Moredon Medical Centre by the end of November.

Providing GP services from four locations across Swindon, including Moredon Medical Centre, Abbey Meads Medical Practice, Crossroads Surgery and Penhill Surgery, the two practices have a combined list size of more than 30,000 patients.

A decision in principle to support the practices was first made by the Trust at its Board meeting on Thursday 5 September.

However, this was subject to further work with Swindon Clinical Commissioning Group, namely that assurance for the right level of support and funding would be in place to enable the programme of improvement work required. 

Now this work is complete, the Trust is preparing for a smooth transition from the previous provider. 

The Trust is best known for its services at the Great Western Hospital, however the organisation also provides community healthcare in clinics and people’s homes across Swindon, with its community services rated as Good in a recent Care Quality Commission inspection.

Nicki Millin, Director of Strategy and Transformation, Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: “This is great news and a positive step towards providing the practices and their patients with long-term stability and a foundation on which tangible improvements can start to be made.

“While changes will not happen overnight, our current priority is to ensure there is a smooth handover from the previous provider, and then to support the Trust in making the necessary improvements.”

Kevin McNamara, Acting Chief Executive, Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Bringing together GP, community and hospital services, gives us a unique opportunity to provide care which feels well-coordinated and more joined-up for patients and their families. 

“This is something only a few places in the country are doing and Swindon now has the chance to be at the forefront of this new approach, all within the NHS family.

“There is a lot of work ahead of us, as we unpick some of the challenges the practices are facing day-to-day, while also building on the things which are working well.

“However, I have met with the staff and I am confident that in time, together we will transform the experience the local communities who rely on these services.” 

Existing patients should continue to book and attend appointments as normal.

Of the five practices that had previously been run by IMH, four – Taw Hill Medical Practice, Eldene Surgery, Abbey Meads Medical Group and Moredon Medical centre – have now had details of their new providers confirmed.

A decision regarding the future provider arrangements of Phoenix Surgery, which is currently in talks to join up with an existing GP practice, is due to be made in early October.