One of the first letters waiting for me when I came home after a recent spell in hospital was a letter from the Primary Care Trust advising that an appeal against their decision to refuse permission for a pharmacy had been allowed by the NHS Litigation Authority. I have been in touch with Over Surgery to offer any support that I can. In the meantime I wrote to the said Litigation Authority asking a number of questions. Specifically I wanted to know why nobody apart from the surgery appeared to have been advised of the appeal and therefore given no opportunity to comment. I also wanted to know whether anyone had visited Over before making a decision. I received a reply this morning. Apparently once the Litigation Authority has made a decision, it refuses to enter into any further correspondence and they therefore merely enclosed a copy of the decision, which is less than helpful. It appears that profit carries more weight than people when it comes to deciding whether we need a pharmacy or not. The cynic in me says that this is hardly the caring Labour government that we are continually promised.
I fear that there is very little that we, as local residents, or I, as an elected representative can do, but I will raise the prinicple of the way this decision was reached with Jim Paice, our MP, and ask that he speaks to the Department of Health.