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Mid Staffs chief executive to stand down

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The chief executive of a scandal-hit NHS trust who was credited with vastly improving standards is to retire from her position.

Lyn Hill-Tout, chief executive of the Mid Staffordshire Trust (MSFT) will step down from her post and leave the trust by the end of May.

She was praised by colleagues who said the major reorganisation she led over the past two years had “led to substantial improvements to the safety and care of our patients”.

Professor John Caldwell, chairman at MSFT, said: “The recent findings by Monitor’s contingency planning team that our services are ‘operationally sustainable’ confirms what she has achieved, and the recent report from the Care Quality Commission that we continue to meet all of the standards they expect.

“Characteristically, Lyn attributed the credit for this outcome to our staff, who have worked hard to make these improvements, but we all recognise her remarkable leadership which has brought the trust to its current position.”

The findings of a public inquiry into “appalling” standards of care at Stafford Hospital between 2005 and 2009 were published last month.

In his report, inquiry chairman Robert Francis QC said hundreds of people had suffered unnecessarily due to a system which put corporate self interest and cost control ahead of patients and their safety.

The public inquiry, which followed an earlier independent inquiry, also found that Stafford Hospital had failed to meet basic standards of care, leaving elderly and vulnerable patients unwashed, unfed and without fluids.

Ms Hill-Tout, who has worked for the NHS for 39 years, said it had been a “great privilege” to have worked for the public sector service.

She said: “Throughout my career I have worked with dedicated and talented people who have strived to provide the very best health care for their patients and communities and this is particularly true of my colleagues at Mid Staffordshire.”

Sign our Speak Out Safely petition to support a transparent and open NHS. We are calling on the government to implement recommendations from the Francis report that will increase protection for staff who raise concerns about patient care.

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