Leeds hospitals’ top boss is set to leave her post

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THE top boss running hospitals in Leeds is set to stand down weeks after managers admitted they would miss key financial targets for the second year running.

Maggie Boyle will leave the trust next month after six years as chief executive.

Her departure from the £220,000-a-year post will come after she was at the forefront of a bitter row with NHS chiefs at Easter over the safety of children’s heart surgery at Leeds General Infirmary.

But it also follows another hold-up to the trust’s bid for elite foundation status due to failures hitting key targets.

The problems proved the trigger for the NHS Trust Development Authority, which oversees NHS trusts yet to achieve elite foundation status, to put the trust into its “escalation process” for struggling organisations.

A new chief executive for Leeds is yet to be identified but a wider management shake-up is going ahead.

In a statement yesterday, Miss Boyle paid tribute to staff for their achievements during her time at the trust.

She added: “I believe the move to new management arrangements which will see a clinically led, managerially supported structure being established is absolutely the right thing to do and will have enormous benefits for patient focused care delivery.

“I would like to wish the senior leaders and all of their staff all best wishes for a successful future.”

The trust, which will earn an income in 2013-14 of more than £1 billion for the first time, was expected by health chiefs to run up a £10 million surplus in 2012-13.

But it missed the target and bosses announced they would do so again in the current financial year after admitting they could not achieve the £24.5m savings required. The trust’s A&E units at the infirmary and St James’s Hospital have also failed to hit key waiting time targets.

The trust is now among more than 40 nationwide, also including the debt-ridden Mid Yorkshire NHS trust, expected to make foundation trust bids between 2014 and 2016. The Yorkshire Ambulance Service and Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust will have their bids assessed by the development authority in coming months.

Bosses at the Mid Yorkshire trust yesterday confirmed plans to progress towards foundation status.

Despite improvements, the trust, which runs NHS services across Wakefield, Pontefract and Dewsbury, ran up a deficit of £21.8m in 2012-13.

Interim chief executive Stephen Eames said the foundation trust move was “an important indication that we are moving in the right direction and in our ability to provide the best health care for local people”.

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