MPs, campaigners, councils and the clergy descended on Oxford on Monday to plead for the Horton General Hospital to be saved from downgrading plans.
Banbury MP Victoria Prentis, Robert Courts MP (Witney and Chipping Norton), Sir Tony Baldry, High Steward of Banbury and former MP, Bishop of Dorchester the Rt Revd Colin Fletcher, Keep the Horton General Campaign officials and Cherwell District Council chiefs appealed for plans that will devastate Banbury’s hospital to be dropped.
Oxfordshire NHS wants to make permanent the ‘temporary’ closure of the consultant-led maternity unit and Special Care Baby Unit (closed last October for staffing reasons), make permanent the premature closure of 45 beds, reduce intensive care levels to exclude ventilation and change stroke care.
Mrs Prentis said she was “anxious about the future of our hospital, frightened about the current safety of mothers and babies and angry about process”.
She added: “We know that there is a domino effect [when services are axed]. Last year there were two anaesthetic rotas at the Horton. One has gone since obstetrics shut. Health Education England – who oversee training accreditation – last month said they will remove training for certain grades. hey accept this will have an effect on recruitment – yet there has been a complete refusal to engage or accept this argument.”
Article from The Banbury Guardian, 9 August 2017