Clifton Hampden surgery, used by many people in Long Wittenham, looks set to be moved to a new Culham Science Village within the next few years.
The Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (OCCG) is drawing up draft plans for GP practices, hospitals and health providers as it identifies priorities and outline ways to make services “more sustainable and responsive to patients’ needs.”
A report says that health care services are under significant pressures as the population grows and there are more elderly people needing care. By 2026 the OCCG forecasts the county will be short of 109 GPs and recruitment is unlikely to meet demand.
As part of South Oxfordshire District Council’s proposed Local Plan 3,500 new homes are planned on a Culham Science Village – adjacent to the Culham Science Centre. This would generate 9,600 patients over the next five to ten years. A site for a new health centre with four GPs is proposed.
The report says: “The best option is to support a Clifton Hampden practice with a planned move to new premises at the Culham Science Village as the existing site at Clifton Hampden is not big enough. This development will not be built for several years but the locality team will continue to shape plans over the next three years.”
The OCCG report says there are “significant challenges” ahead. The county’s population is rising with 60,000 new houses expected to be built in the next ten years which will put increasing pressure on clinical services. The number of people over the age of 60 is expected to increase by more than 58,000 by 2032.
The consultation on the OCCG’s report closes on 17th December. Responding on behalf of Long Wittenham Parish Council retired GP and councillor Dr Peter Rose said: “The OCCG makes the point that transport provision is outside the remit of the NHS. I cannot see any provision for a new surgery in the north-east Didcot expansion of Ladygrove so the only options for our residents in the future would be at Culham or the existing Ladygrove.”
“In the current situation both are further away than current surgery at Clifton Hampden and there is no transport to either. I will raise these points in our consultation response.”