An agreement to extend the contract to run Corby’s Urgent Care Centre has been reached.
Corby CCG and the site’s operators, Lakeside+, had been in a stalemate after a disagreement over funding levels to run the service in March this year.
Lakeside’s contract was due to end at the end of September with no bidders coming forward to take over, meaning the site faced potential closure.
But today (Wednesday) an agreement to extend the contract has been reached.
A spokesman for NHS Corby CCG said: “An agreement has been reached between NHS Corby CCG and Lakeside+ Limited to extend the contract to run Corby Urgent Care Centre.
“The contract will be subject to an extension from October 1, 2017, that will allow it to continue up to but not beyond March 31, 2019.
“Either party may give four months notice to terminate the contract before that point.
“The agreement has been signed by Lakeside + and it will be signed by the CCG this week.
“Both parties are seeking a period of stability to enable engagement and consultation with staff, patients and public about the future shape of local services.”
Lakeside+ said they had nothing to add to the CCG’s statement.
Maria Bryan, from the Save Our Urgent Care Centre action group, says she’s pleased than agreement has been reached - but warned there is much more work to be done.
She said: “I’m very, very pleased, but talk about taking it down to the wire with nine days left.
“I for one thought that there would be a closure on October 1, at least temporarily.
“It’s the first step of keeping urgent care in Corby but we are not finished, it’s not our job done.
“We still could be looking at the same situation come Christmas time.
“We turned the heat up and we’re not turning it down.”
MP for Corby Tom Pursglove said: “I am delighted that it has today been announced that agreement has been reached between NHS Corby Clinical Commissioning Group and Lakeside+ Ltd on a contract extension for the Corby Urgent Care Centre, on a four month rolling basis as of the 1st October.
“This is extremely welcome news, given that this takes the September 30 cliff-edge out of the equation, that we all so feared.
“Along with local people, I very much welcome what the CCG has said in their statement above, and I want to say a huge ‘well done’ and ‘thank you’ to everyone who has worked so hard as part of the campaign on this issue to date, including the ‘Save Corby Urgent Care Centre’ group.
“That said, this announcement only deals with the short-term, and longer-term, we must continue to make the case for urgent care facilities in our town - I will continue to do everything I possibly can to promote that cause in the weeks and months ahead and in due course, I hope that all residents will make their views known as part of the CCG’s formal consultation process.”
Leader of Corby Council, Cllr Tom Beattie (Lab), said: “This is extremely good news for the people of Corby and will give everyone involved the time needed to shape future health services in Corby.
“The uncertainty of the closure of the Urgent Care Centre has been a huge concern to our community over the last few months and with our population growing it is clear that Corby needs this service to help support the strain on the likes of Kettering General Hospital.
“I am glad that both the CCG and Lakeside+ have listened to the community’s concerns and have come to an agreement that seeks to protect the Urgent Care Centre until March 2019.
“We hope and will be urging all involved to now use this time to put in place a permanent solution for the future of Corby’s health care.”
East Midlands MEP Margot Parker (UKIP) said: “I welcome this outcome, however in the longer term we must make sure that the centre continues to look after the expanding local population and we are seeking a long term stable solution.”