On Friday 16 September, Victoria Prentis MP attended a meeting with the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (OCCG) and other Oxfordshire MPs. The meeting was centred around discussions on the NHS transformation proposals for Oxfordshire and ongoing Horton-related issues.

The public consultation has been delayed until January 2017 to ensure the proposals for Oxfordshire’s healthcare system are developed properly and thoroughly.

Although the consultation was expected to start in October, it is now anticipated that it will begin in the New Year, on 3 January 2017. Members of the public will be invited to express their views on the various options for healthcare provision in Oxfordshire, including proposals for the Horton General Hospital.

Victoria commented: “While I understand that this is a far-reaching and detailed piece of work, this was surely foreseeable.  I am sorry that the public consultation has been pushed back, but agree that it is important that all the necessary evidence and risk assessments are collated in advance of the consultation process.  I am concerned that the decision to downgrade the Horton maternity unit was taken without consultation, and has left many people very worried about the future of the hospital. One of the key work streams of the Oxfordshire Transformation Project is to consider various options for the Horton. It is vital that my constituents and local clinicians have their say on the proposals. I look forward to hearing more from the Transformation Project in the coming months.”