Chipping Norton consultation to go ahead

Although the Orders of St John Care Trust is the registered provider, the 14-bed intermediate care beds at the Henry Cornish Centre in Chipping Norton are currently staffed and since last year managed by Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust.

However, in early summer Oxfordshire County Council announced its intention to replace the NHS Trust with the Orders of St John Care Trust, (who own the current building and who are already providing care on-site within the “care home,”)  citing cost and difficult operational arrangements as the reasons.

This proposal caused concern amongst some people in Chipping Norton who wanted nursing care to continue to be delivered by NHS nursing staff.

A round table meeting of interested parties was called on July 24th, where it was agreed that the organisations involved in the commissioning and running of intermediate care beds would consider the operational and financial implications of continuing with the current arrangements in the short term.

However, after discussions between Oxfordshire County Council and Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group, who commission services, and Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust and The Orders of St John Care Trust who provide them, it became clear that  it would not be possible to continue the current arrangements beyond March 2016 with the money available.

John Jackson, Director of Adult Social Services, Oxfordshire County Council said:  “Whilst we recognised that the operational issues could be resolved we could not identify a way forward which resolved the financial issues without requiring additional investment. Analysis shows that the current arrangements are only affordable until the end of March 2016 at the latest.

“The Leader of the Council, the Deputy Leader of the Council and the Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care are all clear that the County Council has a duty to obtain best value for the taxpayer. The current arrangements do not represent good value for money when compared to other intermediate care in the County.  On this basis we believe that there is no alternative but to move to a public consultation setting out possible options that would be affordable and represent good use of limited resources.

“If this is approved at the Cabinet meeting on 15th September we will begin to consult on alternative arrangements which are sustainable beyond March 2016.

“It is anticipated that that this would start on 28th September and the consultation would last for 10 weeks.  This would enable the County Council to make a formal decision on the future arrangements at its meeting in January 2016.”

The consultation will be on two options:

  1. Intermediate care being provided in line with the county wide specification by the Orders of St. John Care Trust in Henry Cornish Care Centre.
  2. Alternative ways of providing intermediate care in the north of the county.  This might involve purchasing intermediate care beds in an alternative care home more centrally located.  It might also involve relying on home based intermediate care such as that provided by the Reablement at Home service or a combination of both options.

It will include:


  • Online consultation
  • Hard copy consultation document, supporting information and feedback forms available in libraries, surgeries and on request – also targeted communications to specific individuals and groups likely to be impacted and/or under-represented
  • Public meeting
  • Stakeholder meetings
  • Staff consultation -  to be run by Oxford Health and OSJCT