£2m for extension of health centre to house three GP practices

The Shinwell Centre,  Horden
The Shinwell Centre, Horden

PLANS have been handed into council bosses for the £2m development of a health centre.

It is proposed to double the size of the Shinwell Medical Centre in Horden so the building can house three GP practices from the village.

Health chiefs are aiming to house the Horden Group Practice, the Jupiter House Practice and the Shinwell practice within the new facility.

They say that after the move the three practices will be run as they are now, the only difference is they will be housed in the same building.

Project bosses say the current buildings used by the Horden Group Practice and the Jupiter House Practice are in dire need of work, but it has been valued at several million pounds.

A consultation has been held in the village asking people what they think about the move.

The proposal has now been submitted to planners at Durham County Council.

Chloe Taylor, Horden Community Surgery project manager, said: “The three practices will still be operating, but in one place.

“Patients will access GPs as they do now, but facilities will be much better than they have now.

“We have done a consultation and there wasn’t anyone who kicked up a fuss and didn’t want it. Everyone was positive and want a nice facility in Horden.

“It is protecting their services.”

Ms Taylor said project bosses have explored the possibility of building new facilities for the Horden Group Practice and the Jupiter House Practice, and also building a new centre on a different site to house all three practices.

But the other options proved to be too costly.

The proposal will see the Shinwell centre increased from around 450 sq ft to around 900 sq ft.