CCG chair and GP Dr Zuhair Zarifa says one in 10 miss appointments and don’t tell surgery


- Credit: Archant

Local people told us they wanted to see a GP at their own GP practice without having to wait a long time for an appointment.

We listened, and from September there will be over 16,000 new appointments every year available across all GP practices in Newham. This means that all Newham residents will have access to the new appointments.

Because of limited resources in the NHS, we worked with local people, community groups and partners to look at how money could be spent differently. From this it was identified that stopping the walk in service at Vicarage Lane Health Centre would allow us to make better use of the money. We will be funding services for people across the whole borough instead of just those that live near Vicarage Lane.

When the walk-in service closes on August 31 the money will be reinvested for new GP appointments. This encourages more people to register with a GP. Registered patients are supported by the same group of physicians and collective medical records.

People who are already registered should contact their GP practice in the usual way for an appointment. If you’re not registered, you can contact your local GP practice or visit

We need our patients to do their bit too by letting us know if they need to cancel or rearrange an appointment. One out of every 10 people miss their appointment and don’t let us know.

Every time you miss an appointment, patients who are in genuine need of help have to wait longer. By letting us know you could be helping someone else who really needs it.

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You can get advice and treatment outside of your practice’s opening hours by calling 020 7511 8880 or visiting a local pharmacy.

Visit to find out more about the walk-in service. More from Dr Zarifa