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2017 will see many changes in the team here at The Marches. We will be very sad to say farewell to three of our doctors.

Andrew and Carolyn Knight have been with us for 25 years, having both trained as GPs at the surgery, working alongside Richard and Karilyn Collins, Roger Thompson and Julian Stokes. Their commitment and service to so many patients over the years has been hugely valued and appreciated. Under their guidance, many future GPs have been trained (as GP registrars with us) and very significant developments at the surgery have been introduced, not least the training of medical students from Keele University, now an established part of our work. They finish at the end of January, but will be doing a few surgeries in February and March to help while new doctors become established.

Ivan Wall was born, bred, and educated, in North Herefordshire. It was a happy day at the surgery when he agreed to stay with us, as replacement for Julian Stokes on his retirement. He too has served many patients with distinction and care during his 13 years at the surgery. He has been our lead in many important areas, including IT, finance and preparatory work for a possible new surgery in years to come. He too leaves in January, to take up a medical post overseas.

We wish them all well and extend our sincere thanks for all their hard work and commitment.

We are pleased to report that, despite the national shortage of GPs, we have been successful in recruiting four excellent new colleagues, all working part-time. Peter McKay, an experienced GP who has worked for many years in Herefordshire leading the Primecare service, joins us in January. Sophie Whittall, our current registrar, returns from maternity leave in the New Year, and will be staying with us on completion of her training.  Rachel Boughen is a GP registrar with a Hereford practice and will start with us in March. Claire Chikosi trained with us a few years ago and has since been working mainly in Worcestershire. She looks forward to returning to our team in September 2017, and will be well known to many already. Finally, Sarah Williams, an established GP with us, has agreed to provide cover for us between March and August, and we are delighted that she can be with us over that period.

We are also excited to announce the recent appointment of new team members. Caroline Mansell will join us in February as a Nurse Practitioner, providing extra appointments in a new minor illness clinic, as well as support in providing an enhanced service in local nursing and residential homes. Melanie Bird starts in January as our first practice paramedic, an exciting new development. She will provide support with our home visits and triage of urgent cases. Finally, three new receptionists will join our front of house team, Frances Devereux, Sheila Galvin and Linda McColl.

Herefordshire CCG have released funds for 26 additional appointments per week from 2.1.17 - 27.1.17.  These appointments are for URGENT care only.

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