At the time there was a greater wish to maintain single-handed practices 
and some PCTs were criticised for denying patients the opportunity to 
continue to receive the personal touch, which many of them appreciated 
single-handed practices for, by allowing them to be taken over by nearby 
group practices.

As an LMC rep I was involved in several single-handed appointments and 
we were keen to preserve the opportunities for doctors who wanted to 
work in this way.  In some there was an intention to expand the practice 
as partnerships, with younger doctors not willing to continue to serve 
large lists on their own or where small lists had stagnated in terms of 
services available in areas where there was room for expansion.

On 23/07/2009 13:14, Robert Treharne Jones wrote:
> Interesting to note the change in focus on practice size - more than ten
> years ago I applied to take over the (failing) single handed practice down
> the road from my own three-partner practice. The idea was that simply we
> could absorb the additional patients into our existing structures - the
> access and facilities were better than what was currently available. 
> But the PCT made no bones about the fact that they were looking for a
> single-hander to take it over as a going (sic) concern, and that they would
> only looking for my solution if no candidates of sufficient calibre came
> forward. In fact there was at least one candidate, so the status quo was
> maintained.