Patients and the public in Oxfordshire have responded in their thousands to proposed changes to some health services in the county.
The 12-week Big Health and Care Consultation, which launched on 16 January, closed at midnight on Sunday 9 April. Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (OCCG), which ran the consultation on behalf of the Oxfordshire Transformation Programme, is delighted so many people have taken part and shared their views.
David Smith, chief executive at OCCG, said: “We want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has taken the time to come to public events, complete the survey questionnaire online or in print, and those who have sent letters and emails to the CCG expressing their views over the last 12 weeks. All the feedback we have received from this Phase One of the consultation is now being collated and analysed and will be put together into a final report to be considered by the OCCG board in May. The views of everyone who has responded to the consultation, in whatever format, will be taken into account before any decisions are made, but patient safety and equal access to high quality care must be key to those decisions.”
The Phase One consultation has been seeking views on:
- stroke services across Oxfordshire
- the use of acute hospital beds across Oxfordshire
- increasing planned care services at the Horton General in Banbury
- changes to obstetrics services at the Horton General
- changes to critical (intensive) care at the Horton General
David Smith added: “Some of these proposals have generated very strong feelings, particularly in the Banbury area. But both phases of this consultation must be about making sure healthcare services across the whole county are the best they can be within the financial boundaries we have been set. We understand that people in Banbury and the surrounding areas cherish the Horton General. We want to reassure them there are no plans to close the hospital. The aim is to invest in its services and buildings so more people can be treated closer to their homes. Work has started on Phase 2 of the Transformation and the public, patients, clinicians and other stakeholders will have opportunities over the summer to help the CCG as it develops the shortlist of options for other health services, before launching the next public consultation.”