The Royal United Hospital in Bath is the first hospital to be authorised as an NHS Foundation Trust in sixteen months, health regulator Monitor announced today.
To reflect its new status, the hospital’s formal title will change to Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust – effective from 1 November 2014.
RUH Bath Chief Executive, James Scott, said:
“This is a momentous day for our hospital, our patients and the community we serve. Achieving NHS Foundation Trust status is recognition of the high quality services and safe care that the hospital provides and the dedication its staff give 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.”
“It is also a demonstration of our commitment to the future of the hospital and to providing services that reflect the needs of the local community.”
“An NHS Foundation Trust can make its own decisions about services. Whether you are a patient, carer, local resident or a member of the public, this is an ideal time to join the hospital as a foundation trust member and play a vital role in shaping its future.”
RUH Bath Chairman, Brian Stables, added:
“I am delighted that the qualities of the whole team here at the hospital have shone through this rigorous assessment. I would like to thank all those involved in the process and especially our staff for many of whom this has been a long journey.”
“Going forward, our priorities remain patient safety and quality of services. However, there will be many opportunities for input and I would like to encourage patients, carers and residents in the wider area to join our efforts and get involved in shaping the future of local health services.”
The RUH currently has over 7,800 Members who are consulted on a regular basis through the Council of Governors. The Council of Governors has been operating in shadow form and has been supporting the foundation trust application process from within. The Council of Governors will now be responsible for holding the hospital and its leadership to account as well as ensuring the public and staff are involved and engaged.
Miranda Carter, Monitor’s Executive Director of Provider Appraisal said:
“We are pleased to announce the authorisation of Royal United Hospital Bath NHS Trust. Up to half a million patients could now have a greater say over their healthcare and the new foundation trust will have greater freedom to provide services that meet the needs of local people.”