OXFORDSHIRE Clinical Commissioning Group has appointed its new chief executive after the position’s previous holder Dr Stephen Richards stepped down because of the demands of the job.

David Smith will take over as the head of the OCCG in June, coming from Kingston Clinical Commissioning Group in London where he is currently accountable officer.

He replaces Dr Stephen Richards, who stepped down at the end of last year to be replaced by interim chief executive Ian Wilson.

Since being established in April last year, the OCCG has faced financial difficulties with a forecast £6.1m deficit this year and £6.9m next year.

The OCCG is responsible for deciding where most NHS spending in Oxfordshire goes.