A North Yorkshire GP surgery will not participate in a proposed merger after it was found to be in an “unexpectedly poor financial position”.

Last year, the NHS proposed merging the city’s Ripon Spa Surgery with North House Surgery and Park Street Surgery.

It was hoped the merger would result in improved patient care and make recruiting and retaining staff easier.

More than 400 patients from across the three practices took part in a consultation where 69 per cent said they were in favour of the merger.

However, in an update sent to patients on Friday, partners at Park Street Surgery and Park Street said they will be moving forward with the merger but without Ripon Spa Surgery.

The new merged practice will be called Fountains Health.

The update said: “Unfortunately, during the due diligence process, Ripon Spa Surgery was found to be in an unexpectedly poor financial position. They have permitted us to share this sensitive piece of information. As a result of this situation North House and Park Street partners do not feel able to merge with Ripon Spa at this time and so they will no longer be involved in the merger process.

“This is hugely disappointing for all concerned as we have all been working closely on these plans for some time and everyone had been looking forward to working together as part of a larger combined team at Fountains Health.”

The update added that the proposed date has been delayed until October 2024.

It said: “We still believe that a merger between North House Surgery and Park Street Surgery is a positive option for our practice, its patients and our staff and will still increase our ability to: Drive excellence in patient care, safeguard the future of healthcare in Ripon, enable patients to have a stronger voice, benefit from economies of scale. We will continue to work closely with our colleagues at Ripon Spa Surgery.”

The two practices will close for four afternoons over the next six months so staff can be brought together to prepare for the merger. 

Ripon Spa Surgery has been approached for comment but we did not receive a response at the time of publication.