It has now been confirmed that the GP surgeries in Crawford and Wanlockhead will close on Thursday, December 29.
The decision on the surgeries, satellites of the Moffat GP practice, was announced following a meeting by NHS Dumfries and Galloway Integration Joint Board.
From January 4 GP and Practice Nurse appointments will be available only at Leadhills or Moffat.
The collection of prescriptions will continue “in the short term” according to the announcement, from the shop in Crawford or at Leadhills.
MSP Claudia Beamish is very disappointed at the outcome.
“This is bitterly disappointing news,” she said.
“I am aware that the Moffat Surgery has faced a number of challenges. However it is frustrating that despite a last minute consultation the Joint Board could only conclude that the satellite surgeries would have to close.
“The loss of GP services in Crawford and Wanlockhead will be a real blow to local people, especially those who rely on public transport.
“People in these communities now face travelling to Leadhills or Moffat to see a GP. Although transport will be available for those unable to make their own arrangements, I understand this will only be for six months.
“I am also concerned that although the collection of prescriptions will continue from the Crawford Shop for the time being, this is under discussion – so another service at risk of being withdrawn!
“Time and time again it is rural people who find their services affected and this is yet another example.
“I have written to NHS Dumfries and Galloway as I expect the transport usage to be monitored and I am calling on them to extended it beyond six months. I have also asked for reassurance that prescription collection will continue indefinitely from Crawford.”
And local councillor Ralph Barker commented: “Cutbacks are affecting everything. It seems to be that the GPs don’t want to come out to rural outreach surgeries.”