HEALTH bosses have assured residents in the borough that changes to GPs' out of hours services will not affect the care they receive.

From December 1, family doctors will have the option to "opt-out" of out-of-surgery service. Currently, most of the GPs services provided in the evenings and weekends are provided by Bury and Rochdale Doctors on Call (BARDOC), which is run by GPs.

Bury Primary Care Trust (PCT) is working with BARDOC to ensure the future of the service. Mrs Sharon Martin, associate director for primary care for Bury PCT, said: "I am confident that patients in Bury will not notice any change to the level of service they currently receive. The current service providing out-of-surgery hours will not be compromised in any way. To the contrary, it will be further developed to meet the needs of the residents of Bury."

She added: "We will be working closely with BARDOC to provide these services. Not only will BARDOC maintain the current level of services provided out of hours, they will build on this to improve the quality of care in a number of areas."