GPs Andrew Michie and Andrew Baines


GPs Andrew Michie and Andrew Baines have been performing the operations for the past eight years at the town’s Dr Piper House, under arrangements with the Co Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust. Darlington Clinical Commissioning Group has now awarded the CQC regulated service to Blacketts Medical Practice.

The operations, performed under local anaesthetic, are being performed on a Friday giving patients the weekend to recover before returning to work.

If there are complications the surgery is open to vasectomy patients on a Saturday or they can drop in on a weekday. Prospective patients should first talk to their own GP about the operation before being referred to Blacketts Medical Practice. The practice then offers patients a one-stop appointment where they will be counselled further to make absolutely sure they are making the right decision.

The no-scalpel technique tends to have fewer complications than the traditional vasectomy procedure.

Dr Michie explains: “Great care is taken to explain the medical procedure and the repercussions so they can decide whether it is the best course of action for them. The great thing about having the procedure carried out at your local doctors is that it is in more relaxed, comfortable and less clinical and daunting surroundings. Our clinical suite is very comfortable, we play music to help patients relax and our qualified nurses put them at ease.”

The procedure is then followed up with tests to ensure the vasectomy has been effective. Blacketts’ service is fully monitored and is part of the Patient Satisfaction Questionnaire programme.