Clinical commissioning lead for the Out of Hours service, Dr Jeremy Welch said:

“The CCG can confirm that we have received notice from South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust of their intention to terminate the contract for the provision of the Gloucestershire Out of Hours Medical Service.

We would like to thank the Trust for their professionalism over the course of the last year and the quality of care delivered by their staff and the doctors and nurses working within the service.

We recognise the challenges the Trust have faced in consistently meeting performance standards and we acknowledge their wish to focus their efforts on the provision of 999/emergency care services in Gloucestershire.

The Trust will continue to run the Out of Hours service for the next twelve months and are committed to providing a quality service for patients as well as working in partnership to ensure a smooth transition to a new provider.

We would like to reassure the public that they will be able to access the out of hours care they need as they do now, by calling NHS 111.

We will shortly begin a procurement process to find a new provider – the provision of high quality care and access to services will always be our top priority.

We are fortunate that local GPs and nurses working in Gloucestershire have continued to support the Out of Hours service over the years and we will want to work closely with them to retain their skills and expertise.

Although this change was not anticipated, it does offer us an opportunity to consider what is needed from the service alongside our work on reviewing the urgent care system. We want truly joined up urgent and emergency care services for the people of Gloucestershire.”