Sir Ian Carruthers has been appointed as chair of Portsmouth Hospitals Trust, the NHS Trust Development Authority confirmed on Friday.

Sir Ian has previously held a number of high-profile roles within the health service, including as interim chief executive of the NHS.

He was formerly chief executive of the South West Strategic Health Authority and chief of the NHS South of England SHA cluster.

Currently Sir Ian holds a number of roles including that of chair of the UK Trade and Industry body Healthcare UK.   

He is also chair at the NHS Supply Chain Customer Board, he is the chancellor of the University of West of England and he also holds non-executive director roles in the private sector. 

Sir Ian said: “Taking up this post at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust gives me the opportunity to work with one of the biggest acute hospital providers in the south of England.

“I hope that my significant experience of the NHS and other sectors at a regional and national level can be of benefit to the trust as it continues to work towards a sustainable future.

“I am looking forward to working with everyone at the hospital and the Clinical Commissioning Groups, the Local Authorities and other providers of healthcare as we all share the aim of improving health and healthcare to the local community.

Earlier this year leaders of three clinical commissioning groups wrote to Ursula War, chief executive of Portsmouth Hospital Trust setting out concerns about the quality of the care it provides.

Ms Ward was asked to explain how she intends to tackle recurrent problems such as cancer waiting time breaches and poor accident and emergency performance in the letters from senior figures at Portsmouth, South Eastern Hampshire and Fareham and Gosport CCGs.