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Latest News


With patients' needs at the heart of everything we do, our website has been designed to make it easy for you to gain instant access to the information you need. As well as specific practice details such as opening hours and how to register, you’ll find a wealth of useful pages covering a wide range of health issues along with links to other relevant medical organisations.

Service Redesign - Case for Change

Following a review of services delivered from Eastry and Market Place Surgeries, and after a survey carried out around service redesign, a proposal is being submitted to Canterbury & Coastal Commissioning Consortium Group in September to close Eastry Surgery.

This is in response to challenges faced with recruitment of medical staff and the current drive within the NHS for practices to come together and to work at scale.

A series of public engagement events have now been held and the minutes from these meetings are available below:

Public Meeting - Eastry Village Hall - 4th September 2018
Roadshow Event - Market Place Surgery - 4th September 2018
Roadshow Event - Eastry Surgery - 31st August 2018
Public Meeting - Eastry Village Hall - 23rd August 2018

The proposal will be considered by the PCCC Committee of the CCG at their meeting on 20th September and we will keep you updated of progress.

Flu Clinics

We are now booking appointments for our 2018/19 flu clinics.  We will be running two Saturday morning clinics on 15th September and 13th October from 8.30 am - 1 pm. Please note that these clinics are for the over 65s ONLY at this stage. At risk patients will be invited shortly to a separate clinic, and the date will be notified very soon.

An appointment is required for ALL clinics.

Flu vaccination clinics are available each year commencing in late September for all patients over the age of 65 and other 'at risk' patients.

Are you 65 years of age or older?

Do you suffer from:

Respiratory disease
Heart disease
Kidney disease
Liver disease
A weak immune system
Or have you had a stroke?

If your answer to any of these questions is YES, then your doctor recommends that you are protected against influenza.

You CANNOT catch flu from the vaccine.

We do not offer a walk in clinic.  For our Saturday clinics you will be given a window of time to attend (15 minutes) with other patients as we have up to 6 staff vaccinating at the same time who are able to vaccinate a large number of patients within these time frames.  PLEASE DO NOT ARRIVE BEFORE YOUR ALLOTTED TIME.  We often find patients ignore their appointment time and arrive early because of shopping, a day out, or because another family member had an earlier appointment.  This causes delays and confusion whilst our teams try to find your name in our clinical appointments system of 500-600 other appointments.  If you do arrive early, you may be asked to take a seat in our waiting room until your appointment time.  

This is a very fast moving clinic.  Patients arrive, walk straight through - preferably with their arm ready, with no need to close doors or undress, are vaccinated and leave.  We do not deal with any general queries during Saturday flu clinics.  

Reminders are issued to those eligible for the free vaccine by way of the very successful text messaging system.  We do not issue postal letters to eligible patients due to high numbers and the cost implications involved.  Therefore if you are an eligible patient, or are a carer for an eligible patient, we recommend you provide us with your mobile number.  You do not have to wait to receive a reminder to book your appointment, if you know you qualify.  However, please be aware that you will be asked by our reception team to briefly state why you are eligible. 

Improved Access

The practice is now providing extended opening on Friday mornings, between 7 and 8 am and alternate Saturdays between 9 - 11 am.  We will have a GP, Emergency Care Practitioner and practice nurse/HCA available over this period.  

This is a new initiative, working with The Butchery and Ash surgeries to provide enhanced cover for the local population.

Please Note

This will be for pre-bookable appointments only, and is not a walk in clinic.  Please ask at reception if you would like an appointment on one of these days.

When these clinics are running, we will not be able to deal with routine enquiries, and you will need to contact the surgery during our core hours of 8 am - 6.30 pm Monday to Friday.  This enhanced service will remain under review.

Welcome to our new Partner

We are delighted to have Dr Iain Finlay come into partnership with effect from 1st August 2017.  Dr Finlay joined the practice as a full time salaried GP in January. 

Emergency Care Practitioner

We are delighted to have Alexander Knight join us as Emergency Care Practitioner.  Alex has 17 years experience working for the Ambulance Service as a Paramedic Practitioner and brings with him a wealth of skills and experience.  This is an additional service the practice will offer patients and Alex will complement our existing clinical team, seeing patients with urgent, same day problems.  

FY2 Doctors in Training

The practice now hosts Foundation Year 2 doctors, who work under the supervision of Dr Drew.  Their placement is for 4 months and we currently have Dr Sandra Darko working with us until April. 

Improvements for Patients

Some of you will have noticed that we have changed the configuration of the main reception at Sandwich. 

All telephone calls for both surgeries are now routed through Sandwich to the hub, which is a a room behind the main reception area.  This provides greater confidentiality when dealing with patients on the telephone and allows calls to be handled more efficiently.  There is the added advantage that this frees up the receptionist on the front desk, who can now give you her undivided attention, and deal with your requests without the distraction of the telephones ringing.  In addition, we have added more options for you to choose when you ring the surgery, to hopefully route you through to the right person from the outset.  We hope you will see these as positive improvements, and that they will enhance your experience of contacting the surgery, whether in person or on the telephone. 

Patients wishing to speak to a member of staff at our Eastry branch can rest assured that their call will be transferred, as appropriate. 

Important Message to Patients

Over recent months the surgery has experienced growing demand for our services, which has coincided with difficulties in recruiting new GPs.  A Partner has recently retired.  These challenges are nationally recognised. Whilst every effort is being made locally and nationally to improve the situation there remains significant additional demand on our available resources.


With this in mind could you please consider the following:- 


  • If you need to cancel an appointment, ensure the surgery is made aware. This appointment can then be offered to another patient.
  • There may be a longer wait for routine appointments.
  • If your problem is urgent and requires assessment on the same day; where possible please make every effort to contact the surgery early in the day.
  • Home visit requests should be made before 11 am and are for patients who are terminally ill and/or housebound. Lack of transport is not a reason to request a home visit.
  • Please treat staff with respect. They are handling a huge demand on a daily basis and with limited resources.


Despite the current challenges we remain totally committed to improving our service and remain focused on high quality patient care.   We appreciate your support during this difficult time.


If you would like to read more about the current pressures on the system, please see the following article published by The King’s Fund:


The Partners

Electronic Prescriptions

Market Place and Eastry surgeries went live with the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) on 17th June 2015.  This means for patients on repeat medication, your prescriptions will be sent electronically to your nominated pharmacy.  More information is available on the 'Prescriptions' tab at the top of this page. 

Educational Afternoons

Please note that both Market Place and Eastry surgeries will be closed for staff training on the following dates from 1 pm.  Should you need urgent medical attention during this time, please contact NHS 111.

  • Tuesday, 18th September, 2018
  • Thursday, 18th October, 2018
  • Tuesday, 20th November, 2018
  • Thursday, 6th December, 2018
  • Wednesday, 13th February, 2019
  • Tuesday, 19th March, 2019

Text Reminder Service

We are now able to send text reminders for your appointments.  Please make sure we have up-to-date mobile contact details for you.  Please pick up a form next time you are in the surgery, or you can complete one here.

Health Help Now

Click here for information about how to access healthcare services.

Have Your Say

Did you know you can now have your say to help improve the services we provide, by completing a short survey.

The Friends and Family Test is about giving patients the opportunity to provide quick feedback on their care and treatment experience. 

You can say what is going well and what can be improved which will help us to make decisions about the care and services we provide.

It doesn't take long and you don't need to give your details - your response is completely anonymous.  Please see link on menu bar. 

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