Thursday, February 13, 2014

News: Rotherham hospital searches for new CEO

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The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust has begun recruitment for a new chief executive officer - "the most significant appointment" they will make.

The trust serves the health needs of the borough and delivers care at Rotherham Hospital, as well as community-based sites and directly in patients' homes. It employs over 4,000 staff with an annual turnover of over £215m.

Brian James retired from the CEO post in November 2012 as unions warned of 750 jobs being cut at the hospital. The following February, the regulator, Monitor, stepped in and announced that Rotherham was in "significant breach" of its licence to operate because of financial concerns. The hospital has been forced to work with an interim chief executive and chair of the trust and use expensive outside consultants to prepare a financial plan for the future to cut £50m from the budget over three years.

The trust has had two interim chief executives since then and new chair, Martin Havenhand joined the trust at the beginning of this month.

Executive recruitment firm, GatenbySanderson, has been brought in to help find the right candidates for the top job.

The job advert said: "Following the recent appointment of our new chair, we are now committed to appointing a chief executive who can lead us at this critical time and help shape the future healthcare provision for the people of Rotherham. This will be the most significant appointment we make in ensuring the successful delivery of our strategic aims.

"You will be a compelling and inspirational leader, with an absolute clarity of vision and purpose to provide the determination needed to see the task through. You will bring flair and energy to drive forward our recovery and strategic plan."

The salary is not disclosed but the highest paid director at the trust has previously been on £178,281 a year.

The board of the trust publicly announced in December that they do not intend to seek a merger with other local hospitals. A warning came from Brian James last year that government reforms would mean that small and medium hospitals will be seen as non-viable and be bankrupted.

John Healey, MP for Wentworth and Dearne, said: "The hospital board are right to pursue a plan that keeps Rotherham as a stand-alone hospital working closely with other parts of the NHS.

"It will be a tough job for the new hospital team because there are still problems from the past to sort out and all hospitals are seeing their NHS funding cut. I hope it means changes in the way the hospital works rather than cutbacks in services that patients will see. I also want to see changes which make the best use of the hospital's highly-committed staff and avoid forced redundancies."

The hospital has recently published its five year plan that shows the details of how it plans to save money.

Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust website

Images: Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust

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