Change at the top as Hinchingbrooke Hospital nears return to NHS control

Hinchingbrooke Hospital.

Hinchingbrooke Hospital. - Credit: Archant

Hinchingbrooke Health Care NHS Trust has a new chairman of the board.

Alan Burns, a former NHS chief executive, has been appointed to the role as part of the handover of the Huntingdon hospital from private firm Circle back to the NHS.

The company’s franchise to run the hospital ends on Tuesday (March 31) and a new board, led by Mr Burns, will meet for the first time on Wednesday, April 1.

Trust chief executive Hisham Abdel-Rahman said: “We wanted to achieve this transition quickly and without any disruption to staff or services for patients.

“The only changes will be to trust management and we will be welcoming new NHS board members. There will be no change for staff and patients – the hospital will continue to provide the services that are available to patients at the moment, under NHS management.”

Hinchingbrooke’s trust remains in special measures after an inspection by the Care Quality Commission and an improvement plan has been drawn up and acted upon.

Mr Burns, whose experience includes financial recovery and change management, said: “This is a great opportunity and a challenge. I am delighted to be joining the Trust to lead and support Hinchingbrooke staff at all levels to deliver improvements which ensure our patients receive the best possible care. I look forward to meeting all those connected with the hospital to understand the issues and their aspirations and plans for the future. I hope to meet members of our community at the first public board meeting for the new NHS Board on 1 April, where we will enact some legally necessary decisions, but also begin the process of setting strategic objectives and direction.”

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An improvement director is to be appointed for the trust to make sure that the changes have a lasting positive impact. The appointment will be made by the NHS Trust Development Agency, which has been overseeing the transition from Circle management to the NHS.