An "urgently needed" medical centre near Norwich has been given the green light by NHS England as part of a £25m investment in Norfolk.

Outline plans for a practice in Rackheath, in Green Lane East, have been approved following a review of a full business case by both health service bosses and the Department for Health and Social Care.

Norwich Evening News: The plans were approved following a review of a full business caseThe plans were approved following a review of a full business case (Image: Newsquest)

The surgery joins a new health hub in King's Lynn in making up a part of a £25.2m government investment package for the NHS across Norfolk and Waveney.

"This is fantastic news for Rackheath and the surrounding villages," said Fran Whymark, Broadland district councillor for the area, where hundreds of homes are being built.

"A high-quality medical facility is exactly what we need and it will benefit so many people.

Norwich Evening News: District councillor for the area, Fran WhymarkDistrict councillor for the area, Fran Whymark (Image: Newsquest)

"Infrastructure is so important and this is a key piece for our community. 

"I am overjoyed."

The hub will be a modern, accessible, digitally enabled facility where residents can access a range of health and care services.

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They will provide "more joined-up services" between primary and community care, helping to improve patient experience and improve health outcomes for local folk.

"I'm ecstatic," said Martin Murrell, who also represents the area on Broadland District Council. 

Norwich Evening News: Cllr Martin MurrellCllr Martin Murrell (Image: Broadland District Council)

"To get this approved after four and a half years of campaigning is huge.

"The centre will cover all the new developments in the area and help services cope with the added demand that brings.

"It's absolutely fantastic news."

A decision on planning permission for the project is expected to be made in the coming weeks.

Norwich Evening News: Plans for Rackheath's new medical centrePlans for Rackheath's new medical centre (Image: Chaplin Farrant)

If approved, work will commence this autumn in the hope that it will be ready for spring or summer next year.

"These state-of-the-art hubs will offer a range of healthcare services for patients, from physiotherapy to mental health support," said health minister Helen Whately.

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"This approach will cut waiting times in the region – one of our top five priorities – and offer patients the highest quality care when and where they need it."

Norwich Evening News: Health minister Helen WhatelyHealth minister Helen Whately (Image: PA)

Tracey Bleakley, chief executive of NHS Norfolk and Waveney added: "These facilities are a key part of the necessary infrastructure we need to deliver better and more sustainable health and social care within our communities.

"They will enable primary and community care services to be better integrated, and will improve access to care for people in these growing communities to help them lead healthier lives."

Norwich Evening News: Tracey Bleakley, chief executive of NHS Norfolk and WaveneyTracey Bleakley, chief executive of NHS Norfolk and Waveney (Image: NHS Norfolk and Waveney)