November 2, 2016
MP James Heappey welcomes Highbridge Medical Centre changes

Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge's MP has this week "very much welcomed" the news that Highbridge Medical Centre is set to unveil a raft of improvements this winter in a bid to address the findings of a poor report by government inspectors.

As first reported here by, the centre's GP service contract is set to pass to a separate NHS organisation, Symphony Health Care Services, at the end of November which will herald the start of a number of improvements.

It follows a poor CQC inspection earlier this year which highlighted the centre's "inadequate" service, when it was placed into special measures, although no concerns over patient safety were raised. Another report from CQC is due shortly.

MP James Heappey told this week: "I very much welcome Symphony Healthcare's takeover of the Highbridge Medical Centre. Correspondence from constituents and the Care Quality Commission had suggested that the practice was struggling but given the acute shortage of GPs in Somerset, it was vital that the practice was not shut down."

"I am especially pleased that Dr Harvey Sampson will lead Symphony's effort to restore the practice to the appropriate standards. Dr Sampson has been working with me on the Shepton Mallet Health Campus and I know he is very well respected in Burnham and Highbridge after years of service to the community as a GP."

"He will not be able to deliver improvements overnight but I will be supporting him, Symphony and and all the team at the practice in every way I can so that patients get the world class primary healthcare that they deserve."

Among the changes will be extra specialist staff being brought in alongside the current Highbridge doctors, to enable the centre to offer improved access to medical services.

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