I read your coverage of the review of Musselburgh’s Riverside Medical Practice with mounting frustration.

If ever there was an example of a huge opportunity being missed, the review was it.

The people of Wallyford who have campaigned and waited patiently for a dedicated NHS facility in Wallyford for many years will, it appears, be the real losers.

The review runs to 74 pages but singularly fails to look beyond the symptoms of the current problems and address the root cause, namely that there are already too many people trying to access the existing service.

As you have highlighted, there are hundreds more houses coming forward each year in Wallyford and the Musselburgh cluster, all of which will further increase the numbers of patients trying to access Riverside.

Improving the telephone system for the practice will undoubtedly help, but it will not solve the problem.

East Lothian councillors have repeatedly identified the need for adequate additional healthcare facilities when housing applications are considered.

It is all the more frustrating that East Lothian Council gave planning consent for a new health facility on vacant land between the new schools in Wallyford in June 2022 with great local support.

The potential benefits of that new facility were not even considered in the Riverside review and East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership (ELHSCP) have refused to take it forward as they consider it unnecessary at present.

How such an approach fits with the stated ELHSCP priorities of delivering the best possible outcome for the communities and improved access to health services is a complete mystery.

Everyone wants to see improvements for both patients and staff at Riverside, but this review feels like ELHSCP hope to get away with a sticking plaster when much more radical surgery is required to seize the current opportunity for a new facility at Wallyford and futureproof medical provision within the Musselburgh cluster for the benefit of all.

Jonathan Brindle

For East Lothian

Developments Limited