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23.07.15

‘Vanguard’ Yeovil District Hospital on track to financial recovery

Yeovil District Hospital is on track to improve its financial position and integrate acute hospital services with GPs and social care services, a Monitor investigation has concluded.

The health sector regulator began looking into the trust’s finances in November to determine whether short-term problems could potentially disrupt long-term integration plans and hinder improvements on patient care.

The trust was chosen by NHS England in March as one of the 29 ‘Vanguard’ areas to take a national lead on developing new models of integrated care and transform how it is delivered locally. They will pioneer innovate models of care that could ultimately be spread across the country.

Paul Mears, chief executive at the hospital, said: "This investigation was always focused upon our finances, but its outcome has a real bearing upon the quality and safety of our care. Our patients can now be further reassured that we are using our resources to good effect to provide them with care which is safe, efficient and of good quality.

"This announcement is a positive endorsement of the way in which we run Yeovil Hospital now and the way in which we will operate in the future, in partnership with NHS and social care colleagues. Our staff, particularly the often unsung colleagues within our finance department, worked extremely hard to ensure Monitor was able to conduct an extremely comprehensive investigation."

He added that the financial challenge they face "remains a real one" but assured that they have a "strong plan to ensure the sustainability and continued improvement of not just services but all local health and care services in the future".

"Our efforts and attention will be on making these plans a reality, and providing our population with a care system they can be proud of."

Monitor has reported that the hospital trust has made substantial progress in developing these ‘vanguard’ plans backed by a “strong leadership team which has developed a robust plan to fix its financial problems”, according to its press release.

Justin Collings, senior regional manager at Monitor, said: “It’s positive for patients in Somerset that we were able to support the trust without the need for formal regulatory action. We believe that the trust has the right plans to tackle its short-term financial problems, with the right people in place at the top to deliver those plans.

“We will continue to support the trust as it progresses with its vanguard plans to provide patients across south Somerset with better care that is closer to home.”

NHS England’s Vanguards are on track to developing programmes to deliver joined-up local health services drawing on a new £200m transformation fund. The overarching project, which has started in April of this year, is expected to benefit more than five million patients through ‘game-changing’ care models. 

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