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21.11.18

Chair of ‘inadequate’ trust quits weeks early ahead of next CQC report

The chair of a struggling foundation trust, which has been branded ‘inadequate’ by the CQC – the lowest possible overall rating – has decided to step down weeks before originally intended.

Gary Page, the current chairman at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS FT, was due to leave early next year when his latest term of office came to an end but has decided to resign “with immediate effect” this week instead.

He reportedly made the decision in order to allow the provider’s new leadership team to carry out improvement work.

Page said: “I believe it is in the best interests of the trust for me to make way now so that those who are going to be part of the new leadership team can take forward the work that needs to be done to address the challenges which continue to face the trust.

“Whilst significant challenges remain, I believe the new team we have in place has the experience, drive and commitment to make the necessary changes in order to deliver the quality of care which our service users deserve. I wish them every success in the future.”

The CQC’s next review on the currently inadequate trust is due to be published within the coming weeks, and it is believed that the provider’s bosses have already had sight of the report according to local press.

Vice-chair Tim Newcomb will act as chair until a permanent boss is appointed in December.

Antek Lejk, the mental health trust’s chief executive, who took up the role in March this year after former boss Michael Scott revealed his retirement just before the CQC’s last inspection report was published, thanked Page for his “commitment and determination” to improving the trust over the past seven years.

“Over the last six months, Gary has also played a key role in helping to build our new executive team and recruit three new non-executive directors, in turn laying firm foundations on which we can build over the coming months and years,” he added.

“Although we fully appreciate that there are still challenges ahead, we are confident that we have the right skills and experience in place to drive through improvements while retaining our focus on providing safe, effective services which meet the needs of local people.”

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