An NHS England director has been appointed as the new chief executive of Kettering General Hospital Foundation Trust.

Simon Weldon will start his new role in April. He is currently director of operations and delivery at NHS England where he oversees national delivery programmes including the urgent and emergency care transformation programme.

Simon Weldon

Simon Weldon has been appointed ‘at a very important time’ for the trust

Fiona Wise will continue as interim chief executive until Mr Weldon joins the trust.

He will be the fourth chief executive of the trust since August 2016. Prior to Ms Wise, Clare Culpin took over from permanent chief executive David Sissling after he went on extended sick leave following a brain haemorrhage. Mr Sissling has since stepped down on medical grounds.

Kettering has been in quality special measures since April. Over the summer it was also involved in a referral to treatment waiting time controversy after a former employee accused the trust of deliberately manipulating RTT data. NHS Protect found “no evidence” of fraud.

Trust chair Alan Burns said “Simon’s appointment comes at a very important time for our hospital. I strongly believe that Simon has the breadth of experience that KGH needs to drive forward its improvement. He brings to the trust the strategic expertise that we need. He also has a proven background of delivery within the acute hospital sector as well as in commissioning and contracting services at regional level from a range of provider bodies.”

Mr Weldon’s previous roles have included London regional chief operating officer for NHS England with responsibility for commissioning public health, specialised commissioning and primary care contracting, and regional lead for emergency planning.