Delays to upgrade work at the Horton

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A big project to redevelop a unit at the Horton’s going to take six months longer than first thought.

More than £2m is being spent on the endoscopy department – to make sure things like single sex wards are in place. Patients will now have to go to Oxford until July. Ther unit was due to re-open this month.

A statement from Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust, who run the Horton, said, “In October 2015, we began a £2.4 million redevelopment project of the Horton General Hospital’s Endoscopy Unit. This work was deemed necessary to secure the future of endoscopy services at the hospital and prevent the need for local patients to travel unnecessarily in the long-term. Improvement of the facilities also ensures that the unit is in line with the standards set out by the national quality assurance body.

“We had hoped to complete this redevelopment in the spring of 2016, unfortunately it has become apparent that the project will take longer than originally anticipated.

“Our clinical and estates teams have worked hard to reduce delays as far as possible and we now hope that the project will be completed in August 2016. The last month of the project will involve water testing the washers and all other work will be complete. It is therefore planned that some endoscopy services will be able to run from July and that from that month patients from the north of the county will be able to have their treatment at the Horton rather than having to travel to Oxford to the John Radcliffe Hospital.”

The move has been met with opposition from hospital campaigners. Keith Strangwood, Chairman of Keep The Horton General said, “A thousand Banbury patients have already had to go to the JR in Oxford for treatment. Now, an extra two thousand people will have to go there on top of that.

“We have been told the project has been delayed because of a ‘slight problem’ with the work. It is now being extended until July or August. That is 11 months, when it should have been four months. How can a slight delay mean an extra six months of work?”

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