A city MP has voiced her firm opposition to current proposals to close Norwich's walk-in medical centre.

Chloe Smith, MP for Norwich North, has written a formal response to the consultation as an open letter to Tracey Bleakley, chief executive officer of the Integrated Care Board (ICB).

Hitting out, she demands answers on topics such as pressures on GP and A&E services and how the consultation has been done.

Norwich Evening News: Chloe Smith, MP for Norwich NorthChloe Smith, MP for Norwich North (Image: UK Parliament)

She said: "I have had to campaign on behalf of residents repeatedly over 15 years in Norwich North against attempts to close walk-in centre services.

"They are popular and helpful and have served thousands of Norwich people over many years.

"When A&E and GP services are under particular pressure, it is hard to believe that a proposal is made once again to stop a simple way for people to see a doctor when they need to.

"Too many constituents tell me that they are concerned they can’t get a GP appointment when they need one, and they're worried about A&E. So we need to better help patients to get the right care rather than make it harder."

Norwich Evening News: The walk-in centre in Rouen Road, Norwich - Picture: Sarah RavencroftThe walk-in centre in Rouen Road, Norwich - Picture: Sarah Ravencroft (Image: Archant 2020)

The walk-in centre currently provides more than 5,000 appointments every month.

About the consultation itself, she adds: "Constituents need better answers.

"I've put comprehensive questions to the NHS on their proposal, and I hope they can provide much greater reassurance to residents that a good service is not going to be taken away.

"I am certainly not convinced that the removal of a well-used, CQC-rated 'good', seven-days-a-week, walk-in facility will improve patient care for my constituents.

"I have profound concerns about aspects of this consultation, and I believe the ICB needs to do much more work to set out a more specific, costed, better-explained option so that the public can take a proper view."

Chloe's open letter can be read in full on her website.