Earlier this year it was jointly agreed by Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to pause their proposed merger until after the end of quarter 2, at which time the strategic position would be reviewed again.
The purpose of the pause was to enable additional focus on the recovery plan to address Royal Surrey’s deteriorating financial position.
Having reached the end of quarter 2, Royal Surrey’s Board has undertaken a self-assessment in relation to the proposed merger and potential benefits. Having carefully considered the changes to the overall NHS landscape while the merger was paused it feels that the opportunity to deliver greater benefits to patient care and efficiency savings exist within the Surrey Heartlands Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) and wider healthcare networks.
Therefore, after careful consideration, Royal Surrey’s Board has concluded that it no longer believes merging offers the greatest opportunity for long term financial and operational stability and feels that it is unlikely that this position will change in the foreseeable future.
Ashford & St Peter’s Board has not undertaken a self-assessment in this way but in the light of the Royal Surrey Board's position accepts that the merger will now not proceed. It recognises the potential value and patient benefits offered by the Surrey Heartlands STP and is absolutely committed to playing a significant and collaborative role in that plan alongside the opportunities presented through other strategic partnerships.
Both organisations are committed to continuing to work together within the Surrey Heartlands STP, building on the positive relationships that we have developed over recent years. They will actively use the work completed as part of the proposed merger process to ensure the greatest outcomes for patients are delivered as part of this.
Issued on behalf of Ashford & St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust