The NHS Confederation has agreed a “collaborative way forward” with the Foundation Trust Network and its suspended chair Sue Slipman.

Ms Slipman was suspended two weeks ago after discussing plans to split the network away from the confederation.

Network chair Peter Griffiths said: “We’ve agreed a collaborative way forward. We recognise it’s in all of our interests to try to find a solution between the Foundation Trust Network and the confederation, and part of that is getting Sue back to work.”

Further talks will take place over the next one to two weeks on a variety of proposals to help the two parties “come up with a way… to work together”, Mr Griffiths said.

The confederation was already discussing its future structure before the network’s plans came to light. Stripping the confederation of its foundation trust members would add to uncertainties caused by the planned abolition of primary care trusts.

Former confederation chair Bryan Stoten said moving the network away from the organisation would “be a real blow to the concept that we have an integrated NHS”.

He added: “Suspending Sue Slipman, who is much admired by members… will only exacerbate tensions between the network and the rest of the organisation.”

A spokesman confirmed a decision on its structure would not be ready by 1 November, contrary to previous statements.