MP writes to support bid for new hospital funding

21/10/2021

“it is a working solution that brings hope and promise to the people of Banbury”

Banbury’s MP Victoria Prentis has written to the Health Secretary Sajid Javid in support of the request for funding to replace the Horton General Hospital with a brand new building on the existing site.

Mrs Prentis has made the case for what she describes as a much loved local hospital which was originally gifted to the people of Banbury back in 1872.

In the letter Mrs Prentis tells the Health Secretary: “Nearly 20% of the buildings are over 50 years old and nearly 70% are over 30 years old.   Buildings are dilapidated, in a state of disrepair and are unsuitable for the provision of high-quality healthcare.

“It has been clear for a long time now that significant investment is needed to ensure that the Horton is fit for the future.”

Oxford University Hospitals Trust has submitted an Expression Of Interest in a bid to secure around £350m of government funding.   The proposal would see a new 58,000 square metre hospital built, replacing the existing buildings.

Mrs Prentis says the Expression Of Interest sets out a vision which is realistic and achievable within the parameters set out by the Health Improvement Fund and is aligned with key national strategic publications.   She adds: “It is more than a vision; it is a working solution that brings hope and promise to the people of Banbury who have fought so long for their local General Hospital.

“The Trust have put a lot of time and effort into the document, and plan to engage with the local community, Keep the Horton Campaign Group, and scrutiny bodies – including the specific Horton HOSC which had advance sight of the document before it went in front of the OUHFT Board at the beginning of September.

“The Trust and this EOI has my full support.”

This is the full text of Mrs Prentis’ letter:

Dear Sajid

I understand that OUHFT has just submitted an EOI for the Horton General Hospital. You will be familiar with the background to the Horton which has not had an easy few years following the suspension and subsequent downgrade of maternity services. The Horton is a much loved local hospital, originally gifted to the people of Banbury back in 1872 which has often been seen as an outlier in the Trust, with core focus for services, recruitment and improvements centred at the John Radcliffe in Oxford. Yet the Horton serves a wide catchment of 170,000 people which has grown significantly in recent years owing to local housing growth.

The services it provides are integral to the overall smooth functioning of the Trust. Yet the hospital has not seen the capital expenditure we would have hoped for it for some time now.   Nearly 20% of the buildings are over 50 years old and nearly 70% are over 30 years old.  Buildings are dilapidated, in a state of disrepair and are unsuitable for the provision of high quality healthcare. It has been clear for a long time now that significant investment is needed to ensure that the Horton is fit for the future.

This EOI sets out a vision which is realistic and achievable within the parameters set out by the HIF. The proposed option is aligned with key national strategic publications including the NHS Long Term Plan, The Next Steps on the Five Year Forward View, Carter Report and Naylor Review. It aims to deliver improvements in a phased approach, supporting the delivery of a transformational model of care in a fit for purpose estate. It also aims to alleviate pressure on other OUHFT sites, fully integrate community-based care, deliver high-quality care and treatment close to home, and improve mental health provision.

It is more than a vision; it is a working solution that brings hope and promise to the people of Banbury who have fought so long for their local General Hospital. The Trust have put a lot of time and effort into the document, and plan to engage with the local community, Keep the Horton Campaign Group, and scrutiny bodies – including the specific Horton HOSC which had advance sight of the document before it went in front of the OUHFT Board at the beginning of September. The Trust and this EOI has my full support.

I hope the Department will take this into account as it considers the EOI.


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