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Heart of England Trust appoints new chairman

HEFT Annual Report

Les Lawrence, the new chairman at Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust

Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust has appointed its new chairman, following an official meeting of the Trust’s governing body.

Beginning in his new role in June 2014, Les Lawrence has been appointed as the new chairman following a competitive interview process. Les brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the position that will help shape long-term planning and future service improvements at the Trust, which treats around 1.2 million patients every year.

Having worked as a non-executive director on the Trust’s board of directors for more than two years, Les was previously the cabinet member for children, young people and families at Birmingham City Council, and has also chaired both the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch. In July 2013, Les was made deputy chair of the board of directors at the Trust, as well as the board’s senior independent director.

Les said: “It is an honour and a privilege to be named the new chairman of the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust. Everything we do must be focused on the patient experience and the quality of their treatment. I am committed to working with patients, staff, governors and the local community to ensure the care provided at Heartlands Hospital, Birmingham Chest Clinic, Good Hope Hospital, Solihull Hospital and Community Services is of the highest standard. It is also important to work with other partners in the local health system and the Local Authorities, including the elected members.  Through this approach, we will be able to seize new opportunities that help shape the future of the healthcare provided at the Trust.”

Richard Hughes, lead governor at the Trust, explained: “Les’ experience and expertise in healthcare management means we were able to vote for Les with complete confidence. His passion for local engagement and patient care shines through, and we are committed to working with him and the board of directors to deliver outstanding patient care and health services at the Trust that we can all be proud of.”

Les succeeds Lord Philip Hunt as chairman, who has held the position from April 2011 and will retire in May 2014.

Lord Philip Hunt added: “I am confident that Les will be an excellent appointment for the Trust. I have thoroughly enjoyed the role of chairman over the last three years and look forward to seeing the Trust grow and develop further in the future.”