Rotherham leads South Yorkshire in GP appointment recovery after pandemic

THE number of GP appointments after the pandemic recovered more quickly in Rotherham than anywhere else in South Yorkshire, a study found.

Rotherham Council’s review into primary care access found that the borough had met or exceeded pre-Covid levels since June 2021.

Healthwatch Rotherham had reported an increasing trend of enquiries from residents who were having difficulty obtaining GP appointments.

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This prompted RMBC’s health select commission to carry out a spotlight review in April. One meeting described the situation as a “crisis” — here across the country.

Scrutiny chair Cllr Maggi Clark told Monday’s (19) cabinet meeting: “The review found, after speaking to GP representatives and primary care commissioners, that in the recovery from the pandemic, Rotherham’s numbers of appointments rebounded the fastest in South Yorkshire.

“At the time of the review, there were approximately 5,000 appointments available across Rotherham every day.”

One of the recommendations made is to examine how to increase general understanding of symptoms, as well as where to seek help and in what timeframe.

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RMBC leader Cllr Chris Read praised the health service’s efforts, but added: “The statistics tell one story, I think residents will have an experience which is not as rosy as those numbers suggest.

“I don’t think we ought to get carried away too much with celebrating.”