Circle to run first franchised NHS trust

25 November 2010

Circle, the employee co-owned partnership, has today been chosen as the preferred partner to run Hinchingbrooke Healthcare NHS Trust in Huntingdon.

In an historic move, the East of England Strategic Health Authority has selected an independent provider to take over the delivery of NHS services at Hinchingbrooke hospital.

Circle have a track record in turning round NHS services by empowering front-line healthcare professionals.  Employing over 1000 seconded NHS staff and treating more than 130 000 patients each year, Circle's NHS day surgery hospitals in Nottingham and Burton delivered over 20% productivity gains in their first year of Circle operation, at the same time as improving patient outcomes to four times better than the national benchmark and patient satisfaction to 99.6%.

Dr. Stephen Dunn, Director of Strategy at NHS East of England, said: "Circle's John Lewis style partnership model and track record of turning round NHS services make them our preferred partner to transform the first NHS trust to be franchised.  We are impressed by the way CIrcle devolve decision-making to those closest to patients, and empower doctors, nurses and all staff to innovate to deliver better care for their patients".

"In Circle we have selected an innovative partner with a cutting-edge approach to propel Hinchingbrooke into the premier league.  This has to be a model for hospitals that face similar challenges nationally."

Ali Parsa, Circle's Chief Executive, said: "Circle's co-operative model offers a Big Society solution for Hinchingbrooke - liberating doctors and nurses to deliver the best services for the patients they know best.  This is a great opportunity for an employee partnership and local clinicians to come together to lead the next chapter in the long and successful history of the NHS.  Through this unique partnership, we will continue to provide high-quality NHS services that are free at the point of use for the people of Huntingdon.  We'd like to thank the Strategic Health Authority for their willingness to think outside the box to secure the highest quality services for patients in Hutingdon."