Penge’s Trinity Medical Centre will cease operating on June 30, the region’s health bosses have officially decided.

While the closure of the centre has been foreshadowed for months, NHS Bromley CCG’s Primary Care Commissioning Committee ratified the decision on Thursday at a private meeting closed to the public and held via weblink, after a physical gathering was called off due to coronavirus concerns.

It means 5,000 patients will have to register with surrounding health practices, with the CCG stating it was trying to find a way to conduct the process without residents having to leave their homes.

“We are looking at how patients from Trinity Medical Practice can register at a new practice over the phone or online, as there are restrictions on visiting GP practices due to the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19),” the body said in a statement.

“We will provide more information shortly on how you can do this.”

Operation of the centre is set to be handed over to the Bromley GP Alliance, a private firm providing health services across the borough, from April 1 to June 30.

The CCG said the alliance would be responsible for safely moving all patients into neighbouring GP practices.

The sign-off from the CCG brings to a close a proposal which was seen as a foregone conclusion as far back as last year.

Various community groups and councillors claimed they had largely been kept in the dark about the possibility of the centre closing.

Ward councillor Simon Jeal said ahead of the closure the authority “must learn lessons” from the proposal, which never fronted any council health committees.

He added the winding down of the centre amid a pandemic could not come at a worst time.

In recommending the closure, the CCG states that overall, the number of registered patients to the centre has decreased since July 2016 – dropping by 56 to a total of 5,262 as of October 2019.

The CCG is confident those patients will be able to be accommodated by five other practices within 1.2 miles of the medical centre.

CCG advice on coronavirus 

If you have symptoms associated with coronavirus including a new continuous cough and a high temperature, you are advised to stay at home for 7 days. Please do not book a GP appointment or attend your GP practice.

If you live with other people, they should stay at home for at least 14 days, to avoid spreading the infection outside the home.

After 14 days, anyone you live with who does not have symptoms can return to their normal routine. But, if anyone in your home gets symptoms, they should stay at home for 7 days from the day their symptoms start. Even if it means they’re at home for longer than 14 days.