Saturday, 23 September 2017

Healthcare decisions delayed by election

THE results of a consultation on healthcare in Oxfordshire will not be released until after the general election.

The first phase of the Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group’s Big Consultation, which ended last month, asked for residents’ views on issues including hospital beds, home care and services such as maternity and critical care.

But after Theresa May’s decision to hold a snap election on Thursday, June 8, the commissioning group said it would not be able to publish any information due to purdah, the pre-election prohibition on public bodies making announcements about new or controversial government initiatives.

Meetings of the group’s board planned for Thursdays, May 25 and July 27 will still go ahead but will no longer include discussion on the consultation.

Instead extra board meetings will be held on Tuesday, June 20 and Thursday, August 10.

The first meeting will include discussion on the consultation and at the second the board will make decisions based on the feedback.

All the meetings will be held in public.

A spokeswoman said: “Doing this will allow the commissioning group to publish the outcome of the consultation after the general election and discuss it at a public meeting.

“It will also allow sufficient time for board members to understand the feedback from the consultation and to consider what else they may need before making decisions.”

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