A GP SURGERY which was branded the worst in East Lothian is improving services, councillors have been told.

Frustration at the service provided by Riverside Medical Practice in Musselburgh was acknowledged by Alison McDonald, interim chief officer of East Lothian Integration Joint Board.

A survey by the Scottish Government revealed that nearly half of patients had negative experiences of trying to contact their doctors through the practice.

But she said that since the survey’s findings, the service had been improved.

Ms McDonald told a meeting of East Lothian’s Audit and Governance Committee that health chiefs “absolutely accepted” that there had been issues at Riverside, which was named the fifth worst GP centre for contacting across Edinburgh and the Lothians in a survey carried out last year.

Eskbridge Medical Practice in the town was named the seventh worst. It is no longer operating and services were merged with Riverside.

Ms McDonald said: “We are working to improve the access. We are meeting 100 per cent same day actions in Musselburgh; previously we were only meeting 50 per cent.”

Councillor John Williamson, Musselburgh ward member, raised the performance of the GP practice in the Health and Care Experience survey which was carried out by the Scottish Government.

Mr Williamson said: “I know I get complaints about access to the centre. There seems to be a general dissatisfaction about the practice.”

The two Musselburgh practices were joined in the list of 20 worst surgeries to contact in Edinburgh and the Lothians by Tranent Medical Practice, which came in at 16th in the poll with 32 per cent of patients giving negative responses to questions about access.

Whitesands Medical Practice in Dunbar was named the third best GP practice for access, with East Linton coming in at sixth – both had a 99 per cent positive response from patients.

Lauderdale in Dunbar came 10th and Gullane 11th in the best 20 practices.