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Staff last to hear trust could be put into 'special measures'

Staff at the first NHS trust in the country to be put into “special measures” over its precarious financial situation only found out when they watched the evening news.

Health secretary Andrew Lansley last week took the first step towards putting South London Healthcare Trust into administration, which would effectively declare it bankrupt.

A senior figure at the trust told Nursing Times he was “very angry” that its 6,000 employees were not told before the media was informed about the situation.

A trust spokesman said: “This has obviously been a difficult time for our staff who rightly feel very great pride in the quality of care they provide for patients, including among the lowest mortality and infection rates in the country.

“We informed our staff as soon as we were made aware, and this has been followed up with an extensive series of staff meetings on all of our hospital sites.”

South London Healthcare recorded a £65m deficit in 2011-12, partially as a result of a private finance initiative used to rebuild two of its three hospitals.

Readers' comments (6)

  • This makes me feel very sad as I used to work for one of their hospitals, the care was fantastic and I shall be thinking of all the staff who have worked so hard.

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  • It's so wrong that the media were briefed before staff. Not just because it could have left hard-working staff upset and shocked, but because they would have had no information to reassure patients and their relatives. How hard would it have been to give staff and patients the courtesy of finding out exactly what was going on first? They must have been worried sick.

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  • I hope they manage to keep these hospitals open, I worked there and found the staff dedicated and caring.

    All 3 hospitals serve a massive community, where are the staff and patients expected to go if they close any of them?

    The government must find a way to help finance this, if we can find money to bail out bankrupt countries then surely we can help our own bankrupt hospitals.

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  • why are foreign needs being put before our own? it seems like total mismanagement.

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  • what do you expect from this con govt

    they would prefer to bail out their rich friends with our money than bail out a hospital

    its a total disgrace!!!

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  • This will be the excuse the Cons have been waiting for to begin to dismantle financially failing Trusts.

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