Oxford Rural Community Hospital will reopen in June.

Canterbury DHB will reopen Oxford Rural Community Hospital in mid-June.

Becky Hickmott, executive director of nursing, says the Oxford facility will reopen first as capacity is limited at other aged care facilities in Oxford. The majority of residents come from this facility and Oxford staff have sufficient capacity to provide care for the seven residents who wish to return.

In the districts surrounding the rural community hospitals of Waikari, Ellesmere and Darfield, there are beds available at other local residential aged care facilities, and until we have enough staff to provide care safe and appropriate for their residents, their reopening will unfortunately be further delayed. .

We continue to see widespread and high COVID-19 infection rates among our Canterbury staff and community, including in areas affected by these temporary closures. Residents were transferred to other facilities because Canterbury DHB could not guarantee staffing levels that would enable these rural community hospitals and local aged care facilities to provide safe and appropriate care.

“Current circumstances require a discussion with our rural communities about how we could deliver a better mix of services in these rural areas that makes best use of our resources and allows certain services to be delivered closer to home,” says Becky.

Canterbury District Health Board is committed to investing in rural communities and wants to work in partnership with them, and our staff who know their communities best, to develop a future practice-based service model. modern and evidence-based.

A working group including clinical and operational staff, as well as community representatives, will be convened to develop a proposal on a possible future model of care in these communities.

“We aim to share the proposal in four to six weeks. We will then seek feedback, first from staff. There will also be a process to listen to the views of current residents and their families and later, the wider community,” says Becky.

“In the meantime, our focus will be to ensure a smooth and welcoming return home for the seven residents returning to Oxford Community Hospital.”

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