STRUCTURE: Minutes from NHS London reveal it had a range of concerns regarding the takeover of NHS Sutton and Merton’s provider arm by the Royal Marsden Foundation Trust.

The specialist cancer trust has sites in Sutton and central London and is the only specialist organisation in the country to have taken on community services under the transforming communtiy services programme. The majority nationally having gone to acute or mental health trusts.

Minutes of the SHA’s capital investment committee reported that, following a meeting on 25 March, there had been further contact with the Royal Marsden “about the concerns expressed in relation to clinical governance; organisational commitment; and knowledge of the local population”.

It adds: “The chief executive [of the Marsden] had responded through a letter which had been circulated to the committee. The chief executive’s letter had provided significant reassurance.”

However, the SHA committee set the FT two conditions to meet:

  • There should be a programme of ongoing professional development put in place for the chief operating officer and chief nurse to build expertise in community services;
  • The trust needed to prioritise securing a suitably qualified and experienced replacement for Sutton and Merton’s chief operating officer Linda McQuaid.