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Have your say on plans to make local hospitals better

People across Manchester are being asked to back plans to develop local hospital services by Central Manchester and Manchester Children’s University Hospitals NHS Trust (CMMC). The Trust is applying for NHS Foundation Trust status, which will give patients, staff and local people greater involvement in planning future hospital services. CMMC includes Manchester Royal Infirmary, the Eye and Dental Hospitals, St Mary’s, Booth Hall and Royal Manchester Children’s Hospitals. Although still part of the NHS, Foundation Trusts are free from central government control. They are accountable to their members, who are drawn from patients, local communities and hospital staff, and monitored by an independent regulator. Trust chairman Peter Mount explained: “We are applying to become a Foundation Trust because we believe it will make us more accountable to our patients, staff and the wider public. It will also give us more freedom and flexibility to meet the needs of the communities we serve.” CMMC has launched a 12-week public consultation programme about its bid for Foundation status, which runs from 9th July to 30th September 2007. To find out more, patients and members of the public are invited to attend open events at the following CMMC hospital sites: 6th August Booth Hall Seminar Room 3, First Floor 10am-4pm 7th September Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Postgrad Centre, Ground Floor 10am-4pm A document outlining the application and the way the Trust proposes to run the new organisation is available from www.cmmc.nhs.uk/foundationtrust or by calling 0161 276 8661. “We are urging local people to tell us what they think about our plans,” added Peter Mount. “If our application is successful, we aim to sign up around 20,000 Foundation Trust public and staff members, who will have a real say in the way our hospitals deliver healthcare services in the future. This is an exciting step in our development and will pave the way for achieving the highest standards of patient care, staff training and medical research at the Trust.”