Corby Urgent Care Centre contingency plan ‘no longer an option’

Corby's Urgent Care Centre.
Corby's Urgent Care Centre.

Corby CCG says it is unable to make any reassurances over provision for the town’s urgent care centre when the current contract ends in nine weeks.

The site in Cottingham Road has been at the centre of an ongoing row over funding, with operators Lakeside+ saying a new contract to start on October 1 doesn’t offer enough money.

Corby CCG put the contract out to tender but the only bidder withdrew - and it’s now been revealed that that bidder was the same organisation which was earmarked as a contingency operator when Lakeside+ threatened to walk away in March.

In a letter to MP Tom Pursglove, Corby CCG chief executive Carole Deghani admitted their previous contingency plan was not an option.

Her letter said: “The procurement resulted in one bidder but 14 days after they submitted their bid, they withdrew it.

“Unfortunately as that bidder is the same organisation willing to step in last March, it means that contingency arrangement is no longer an option for us.

“There were no other bidders and we do not know of any other third party who may be willing to step in.

“The current dispute with Lakeside Plus makes a renewed procurement very difficult.

“As I explained, the company declined to bid for the 12-month contract but has indicated preparedness to seek a judicial review should the CCG try to find another provider.

“This would significantly compromise any efforts to secure a new UCC provider by September 30.”

An independent expert is now looking at what the cost of the contract should be, with a decision expected in the next few weeks.

Ms Deghani added that she did not know whether the existing level of service would be affordable.

The letter continued: “For all of these reasons, the CCG is not in a position to give any reassurances about what urgent care provision will be in place from October 1.

“We do not know whether the existing level of service will be affordable, or whether any provider organisation will be willing to deliver it.”

Residents, Tom Pursglove, Carole Deghani and health officials will all come together tonight at a public meeting to discuss the site’s future.

The meeting starts at 6.30pm at the White Hart in Corby Old Village.