The Express is calling on readers to support our campaign to back Macclesfield hospital’s bid to become a Foundation Trust – and affect the future of YOUR healthcare.
The change will give East Cheshire NHS Trust – which runs the hospital – more freedom to manage its affairs and finances, and protect its future.
It will be more accountable to the community and make decisions based on local needs.
But this change is more than just aspirational – it is compulsory and it really does mean your ‘Health is in Your Hands’.
The trust has until April 2014 to successfully apply to central government or risk another trust or private company taking control of our local health services – including Macclesfield Hospital. This is a real risk. Last year Trafford General Hospital was taken over by Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust after failing to achieve the status in its own right, while history was made when Circle, a private sector organisation, took over the running of Hinchingbrooke Hospital in Cambridgeshire.
To succeed the trust must prove it can maintain high clinical standards, top quality leadership, tight financial controls and that it has the support of the trust’s 3,500 staff.
Critically, it must also prove it has the support of the community it serves – and that is you.
That is why we are launching the Health in Your Hands campaign and urging readers to support the application.
John Wilbraham, chief executive of East Cheshire NHS Trust, said public support is essential.
“We are keen that we make a successful application to maintain local accountability and local influence about service provision.
“A Foundation Trust cannot operate without staff and public members and the Council of Governors. Public representation in Macclesfield, due to the locality of our main hospital services, is essential.
“Our consultation is about our ambitions to gain NHS Foundation Trust status and we can’t achieve this without our members, so your support is essential.”
Between now and end of the consultation process in February the Express will cover the application’s key issues.