Working party to examine loss of emergency surgery

Horton Hospital
Horton Hospital

Hospital bosses have agreed to form a group to examine problems caused by the loss of emergency general surgery (EGS) at the Horton General.

Dr Peter Fisher of the Keep the Horton General campaign appealed to Oxford University Hospitals Trust (OUHT) this week to set up a working party to probe issues the group feels should have been subject to full public consultation.

He told Banburyshire’s Community Partnership Network (CPN) he wanted the loss of EGS to undergo the same rigorous investigation as maternity and children’s services in 2006, when a huge public campaign prevented a full scale downgrade of the Horton.

EGS was removed almost overnight in January 2013 after two surgeons were removed, one on disputed disciplinary charges. Campaigners have since fought for consultation before the move was made permanent.

In a report to CPN, Dr Fisher said: “In 2006... it was only after the plans were subject to full examination and discussion and further research,that their limitations were revealed.”

He said a working group needed to be formed to look into issues, including ways transfers could be minimised and assessments carried out at the Horton to save distressing travel and delays.

Director of planning for the OUHT, Andrew Stevens, said: “We will convene a meeting with Peter Fisher and someone from the service.”