Date: 1 May 2014
RUH re-starts bid to become NHS Foundation Trust
The Royal United Hospital Bath's application to become an NHS Foundation Trust has been re-activated. Monitor, the regulator of NHS Foundation Trusts, has confirmed it will begin its assessment of the RUH this month.
Chief Executive James Scott said: "Achieving NHS Foundation Trust status is the next step on our journey of continuous quality improvement.
"We aim to become a real member-led organisation, with better engagement with staff and public members, and will involve our governors and members in setting our strategy.
"We've done extremely well with managing our finances in recent years and being an FT will mean we can retain our surpluses, and borrow to invest in new, improved services.
"We will use all of the many benefits of being an FT to continue to improve patient safety and the overall patient experience."
The Trust believes it is in a strong position to become an NHS Foundation Trust having made significant progress in the last year. This includes being assessed as delivering safe and effective services by the Care Quality Commission, which also placed the RUH among the lowest risk hospitals in the country.
In recognition of the Trust's innovative work to improve patient safety, it was selected by the Secretary of State for Health to be among the first 12 trusts to help lead the Sign up to Safety campaign, which aims to embed an open, compassionate and transparent culture within the NHS and to reduce incidents of avoidable harm to patients.
The Trust has also delivered on its plans to improve quality while saving money, and won the contract to provide maternity services from 1 June both at the RUH and at community birthing centres, the first time it has run these services for 22 years.
The RUH already has almost 7,500 FT members and its shadow council of governors has been in place since November 2012.