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19.12.13

Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust will be dissolved

Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust will be dissolved because its services are “unsustainable”, the Trust Special Administrators (TSA) have announced.

Stafford Hospital will be run by the University Hospital of North Staffordshire NHS Trust, and the Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals NHS Trust will run Cannock Hospital.

The recommendations call for maternity services to be downgraded at Stafford hospital, with more difficult births dealt with at University Hospital. Paediatric and A&E services will remain operational but reduced at Stafford, with only less serious cases served.

The TSAs’ final report follows local protests to retain the services.

Monitor now has 20 working days from Tuesday 17 December to consider the report. If approved, it will be passed to health secretary Jeremy Hunt who will have a period of 30 working days to announce his final decision.

It would take three years and £220m to implement the proposed changes, if they are agreed.

Maggie Oldham, chief executive of Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We hope that the TSAs’ recommendations will achieve the best long-term solutions for patients.

“Our hope is that once the TSAs’ report is passed by Monitor to the Secretary of State for Health, he will announce his decision on the recommendations as soon as possible and the implementation of any changes he approves can begin.”

She added: “The period of uncertainty about the future of the Mid Staffs has begun to have a bigger impact on our ability to recruit and retain staff.  This means we have difficult decisions to make about what temporary steps we need to take to make sure that we maintain safe staffing levels over the winter period so that the services we provide remain safe and are of the quality we and our patients expect.”

Mid Staffs is the second trust to be dissolved, after South London Healthcare Trust last year. It was dissolved effective 1 October, 2013, and all its services are now run by other trusts.

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