TDA and Monitor to share single chief executive

11 Jun 15

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt is to merge the chief executive posts at Monitor and the Trust Development Authority as part of an effort to improve the coordination between the NHS watchdogs.

Under the plan, all NHS providers – whether they are foundation trusts or trusts – will be placed under the oversight of one chief executive, although there will not be a complete merger of the organisations. Monitor will continue to work with foundation trusts and the TDA with the non-FT sector.

However, Hunt said a single chief would lead to teams working closer together, as all hospitals need access to the same kinds of support, and should be subject to the same kinds of interventions if they face performance problems.

Currently, the TDA oversees the performance management of non-FT hospitals, and is intended to support them towards meeting the foundation trust status. This is assessed by Monitor, which also acts as the watchdog for the sector, where hospitals have more financial freedom.

The chairs of both Monitor and the TDA have been asked to run an open and competitive process to identify a single chief executive by the end of the summer. Ahead of this, the current chiefs – David Bennett of Monitor and Bob Alexander of the TDA – will work to bring the two organisations together. Bennett has then said he will step down in due course.

Hunt said the closer working would enable the entire healthcare system to work together to achieve best value for money, cut waste and deliver efficiencies, including the spending limits on agency workers.

“This is an exciting opportunity for the people at Monitor and TDA to combine their respective skills to create a world-class capability to support NHS providers. I am grateful to David and Bob for their contribution over recent years in the creation of this capability.”

Responding to the announcement, NHS Confederation chief executive Rob Webster, said merging the leadership of the TDA and Monitor would help ensure that national NHS bodies worked more closely together.

“We now need to ensure that this is done quickly and safely so that the functions they fulfil continue without distraction,” he added.

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