STRUCTURE: More than 100 people have put themselves forward to stand in the first election of governors at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust, as it seeks to become a foundation trust.

In total 115 people are contesting 22 available places – 16 chosen by the public and patient members, and six staff members voted for by colleagues. They will work alongside nine people selected to represent other NHS organisations, local authorities and universities.

A press statement said the average of more than five people contesting each seat was “well beyond the expectations” of the trust.

Trust chief executive Marianne Griffiths said: “We have been blessed with an exceptionally strong field of candidates and we are told that the levels of interest in standing are unusual, practically unheard of.

“To have more than 100 people seeking to take such an active role in the running of their local hospitals is humbling, and a real vote of confidence in our staff.”

Voting papers will be sent out to staff and members on 23 August, and the voting period closes on 18 September. A full list of candidates will be published on 8 August.

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