An action group set up to save Corby’s urgent care centre has lodged a legal challenge over changes to its service.
The site in Cottingham Road has been under intense scrutiny since Corby CCG, which plans and pays for the borough’s health services, said the current provision was not right for the town.
Bosses want to keep the facility open, but make it an appointment-only service to ease pressure on local GPs.
They say they do not need to consult as it is not a material change - but the Save Our Urgent Care Centre action group disagrees.
They have now lodged papers for a judicial review with the courts after a large donation from ‘group of local benefactors’.
Campaign organiser Maria Bryan said: “They [the CCG] don’t think their plans for the UCC are a change of service so they don’t think that they need to formally consult with the people of Corby.
“We think there’s a massive change of service and that people who are no longer going to be able to access the service are having a complete refusal of service.”
The group needs about £2,000 of the £27,000 target required but has served pre-action papers, which are being read by the courts.
An independent review into the proposed changes by iQ4U Consultants has recommended that there is additional evaluation of the change of service.
They say proposed changes appear to be more significant than reported [by the CCG].
Maria added that the report had given the action group a big confidence boost.
She said: “It’s really heartening as we just knew we were right.
“The report has been so reassuring.
“All we get from the CCG is ‘we’re the experts’ but this contradicts that.”
A Corby CCG spokesman said they were disappointed by the move to seek a judicial review.
The spokesman said: “NHS Corby Clinical Commissioning Group has engaged intensively with the public over the past year about the future of local healthcare services.
“Those views have directly shaped our plans to retain an urgent service in the town and increase the capacity of GP services.
“These are both things which local people have clearly told us they want to see.
“We are therefore disappointed a local action group has sought a judicial review.
“We are concerned this development could potentially compromise the CCG’s ability to deliver what the people of Corby are asking for.”
Previously, a CCG spokesman said a review could delay the process of appointing a new provider at the centre and ultimately temporarily close the centre.
But Maria said this was ‘a threat’ and that, should the CCG face such a situation, it should do everything it could to keep it open.
She added: “The CCG are fighting it but they could stop this today, they could stop it tomorrow.
“We just want them to have a consultation and have a conversation that is two-way.”
The group is continuing to fundraise to secure the £27,000 needed and will have a stall at the Highland Gathering.
To donate to their cause, click here.
To read what the CCG have to say about the issues, click here.