STRUCTURE: The chief executive of a south west trust hoping to merge with a social enterprise and mental health provider in the region is due to meet the heads of the proposed merger partners next month.

Lezli Boswell, chief executive of the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust, told her staff in a letter last month that a merger involving the £323m turnover trust, Peninsular Community Health and mental health provider Cornwall Partnership Foundation Trust would “revolutionise” healthcare for the local community.

Lezli Boswell

Lezli Boswell says it is an opportunity to ‘revolutionise local healthcare’

The letter points to a proposed merger between Peninsular and the FT and said Ms Boswell is keen that “Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust is part of that discussion”.

“I believe that we have a once in a generation opportunity to revolutionise healthcare for the local community”, she said in the letter.

“We should now bring services together to meet patient need rather than organisational need.”

Ms Boswell said a merger would make sense financially but may mean the trust dropping its aspirations to become an FT.

Steve Jenkin, chief executive of Peninsular Community Health, told HSJ that a meeting attended by all three chiefs would be held in mid September and would discuss “the bigger picture over the next five years”.

“We are focusing on the [work of] two organisations but the meeting in mid September is then to look at the bigger picture,” he said.

“We are aware of what Lezli said and we recognise that in the longer term there will be debates going forward.”

HSJ reported last month that Peninsular Community Health and Cornwall Partnership commissioned a study to examine the benefits of working closer together.

The results of the review will be presented to both organisations in October.