Bill Moyes, who championed the development of foundation trusts as Monitor executive chair, has urged the NHS to reconsider “whether the model of foundation trusts is sensible”.

Mr Moyes, who held the influential role at Monitor from 2004-10, has been chair of the General Dental Council since October.

In an interview with HSJ he argued the failure of many trusts to become FTs, ten years on from when he oversaw the first ones, “does raise questions both about the viability of those institutions, but also about whether the model of foundation trusts is sensible”.

He also suggested that a “single tribunal” could take over from all health professional regulators in judging cases, leaving them to focus on investigating and prosecuting cases.

“If one-third of the hospital system is permanently not demonstrating good viability and good governance, is that telling you something about actually how the system should run as opposed to how we thought it should run?”

However, he said the health service should continue to pursue a “system in which hospitals are freestanding, viable, able to stand on their own two feet, take chances [and] do things differently”.

Mr Moyes said he was not in close touch with system regulation, but suggested that at present “we’re prepared to allow a good number of hospitals to be dependent on subsidy”.

He said authorisation tests should not be dropped to allow all trusts to qualify.

Mr Moyes said he did not have any “proposals for how FTs should develop”.

Bill Moyes questions whether FT model remains 'sensible'