THE problem of recruiting GPs is being felt nationwide after a local practice failed to secure a replacement doctor, according to Hywel Dda University Health Board.

Patients of Neyland and Johnston Surgery have been given assurances only up to October that it will remain open.

It follows the planned retirement of GP partner Dr Frank Tobin, and several unsuccessful attempts to recruit a replacement.

According to the health board the practice advertised extensively, and attempted to promote the positives of living and working in Pembrokeshire, without success.

Now prominent figures of the Neyland community have weighed in saying they are working to ensure the service is not disrupted.

Deputy leader of Pembrokeshire County Council Paul Miller says he has been in contact with the health board chief executive and the minister for health to ensure there is a plan beyond October.

Former mayor Dr Simon Hancock said GP services will ‘most certainly continue’ in the town after October.

Hywel Dda has only been able to give registered patients assurances up to October that services will continue to be provided as normal.

The health board has reassured the public that all services, including the preparation of prescriptions, will continue until the end of October under the current partnership, with work progressing to ensure provision from November onwards.


A spokesperson said: “The practice has advertised extensively and promoted the positives of living and working in Pembrokeshire.

"They also sought to target newly qualified doctors looking for opportunities at the start of their careers.” 

Cllr Miller said: “I've been clear that under no circumstances would I accept the loss of a GPs service from the town and I've been pleased to hear both the health board chief exec and health minister recognise the importance of maintaining a service in Neyland.

“There's a lot of work to do between now and October, but I'm committed to doing whatever it takes.”

Eleven-time mayor of the town Dr Hancock sent his congratulations to Dr Tobin and thanked him for his ‘outstanding service’ to the community.