Care Home Short Stay Hospital Beds to be Closed

The short-stay hospital beds at Chilterns Court Care Home are to close at the end of this year.  These beds are mainly used for people recovering from surgeries who are living on their own for a few weeks.

In November 2016 when the Chilterns Court Care Home opened on the site of the old Townlands hospital 11 beds were leased by Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group for step up/step down care to replace those lost from the Peppard Ward.  There were 7 short stay rehabilitation beds available up until a few weeks ago when one of the beds was taken out of use, leaving 6.  The medical cover is provided on a rota from The Bell and Hart surgeries.

BOB ICB (Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire West Integrated Care Board) and OCC (Oxfordshire County Council) proposed a joint strategy to reduce the reliance on short stay hub beds at an Urgent Emergency Care Board on 25 May where it was endorsed. The plan to increase discharges home via the Home First approach and reduce reliance on short stay hub beds was set out in presentations to Partnership Board on 2 June and Joint Executive Committee on 8 June.

Louise West, Practice Manager at the Bell Surgery said, “We can confirm that we have not received any communication from BOB ICB or Oxfordshire County Council or Oxford Health regarding the end of the contract for the rehabilitation beds, neither has there been any consultation. We first starting contacting Oxfordshire County Council in August when we heard rumours; we have still not had any confirmation. This was a well-used resource in our community and the timing of its closure will be a challenge as we approach the long winter months.”  Sarah Moberly, Practice Manager at the Hart Surgery added, “We didn’t receive any notification either.”

County & Town Councillor Stefan Gawrysiak was informed about the threatened closure on the 7 September by The Bell Surgery and he immediately contacted the Chair of  Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire West Integrated Care Board to ask why this was happening.  At the Full Town Council Meeting he said, “These beds are 100% utilised but the care board are threatening to taking them away. This change of service is significant and the public should have been consulted on it.”

A spokesperson for The Orders of St John Care Trust who own Chilterns Court said, “Following the decision by the local integrated care board and Oxfordshire County Council to discontinue the use of seven beds in Chilterns Court Care Centre for use as short stay rehabilitation beds, we will be welcoming people that require long-term nursing care. We are pleased to continue to serve the local community through our compassionate, loving nursing care, as well as the residential, dementia and respite care we also offer.”

In a joint statement, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire West Integrated Care Board and Oxfordshire County Council, said:

“Health and social care partners in Oxfordshire are supporting more people than ever to recover in the comfort of their own homes. Each week more than 30,300 hours of home care is provided for people in the county, which represents a 19 per cent increase in the last 16 months.

“This reflects our Oxfordshire Way vision to support more people to live well and independently within their own communities for as long as possible. It includes enabling patients to return home from hospital as soon as possible through our Home First pathway, supporting them to recover more quickly and regain their independence.

“We work closely with health and social partners on a daily basis to develop a health and social care strategy for the region. The decision to reduce the amount of short stay hub beds is in line with national guidance. While we recognise that improvements can be made in how we communicated these decisions with local partners, we are confident that the strategy will bring about better outcomes for the people of Oxfordshire.”



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