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NHS Hospital trusts in Hampshire to merge

Two Hampshire NHS hospital trusts are merging to ensure one of them can achieve foundation status. Winchester and Eastleigh NHS Trust will merge with Basingstoke and North Hampshire NHS Foundation Trust.


 The former has been unable to achieve foundation status "due to long-standing financial issues", the NHS said.


Hospitals with foundation status are accountable to local communities through "members" - anyone who lives in the area, has been a patient or works at the trust. They then elect a board of governors.


[quote top=The government wants all NHS hospital trusts to gain foundation status by 2014. The NHS said:] The process is at a very early stage and there will now follow a lengthy period of due diligence and public engagement, Hospital clinicians have been meeting to discuss how services could work better together for patients and staff through single management teams. Any significant changes to services would be subject to public consultation. [/quote]


The NHS said the trusts should be a single foundation trust by April 2012. Basingstoke and North Hampshire achieved foundation status in 2006.