RETIRED chartered accountant Mike Burrows has been appointed to chair the new ‘residual trust board’ that will oversee the franchised management of Hinchingbrooke Hospital in Huntingdon later this year.

The new residual trust board for the 223-bed hospital will be established from October 1.

Following a rigorous procurement process Circle was announced last November as the preferred bidder to run services at Hinchingbrooke Hospital. Subject to Government approval and contract signature, Circle will take over the running of the hospital's services in November this year, NHS East of England, the strategic health authority said today (Tuesday).

For the past three years Mike Burrows has been a non-executive director and audit committee chairman at NHS East of England.

He said today: "This is a first for the NHS, and it is very exciting to be a key part of it. While Circle will take over the day-to-day operation of the hospital, the staff, hospital and assets will remain in the NHS, with patients continuing to receive NHS services.

"The residual trust board will act as guardians of the trust and will play an important role in ensuring patients using the hospital continue to receive the high standards of care they have come to expect from the NHS.

"The residual trust board will be responsible for ensuring the voices of patients and staff are heard, providing a vital communications channel for stakeholders and the community."

Sarah Boulton, interim chairman of the strategic body, said: "His financial expertise will also be a valuable asset to his new role in helping to ensure the new operating franchisee balances Hinchingbrooke Hospital's books while continuing to improve services and delivering high quality and safe care for patients."

Mr Burrows will be paid £18,437 for the Hinchingbrooke job.