The first NHS hospital is being marketed for sale

Wed, 13 Apr 2011 | BUSINESS SALE

The first NHS hospital has placed itself on the market after admitting that it cannot sustain itself financially.

Aneurin Bevan, the Labour Party politician who spearheaded the NHS in 1948, selected Trafford General Hospital as the founding NHS hospital in the UK.

The Trafford Healthcare NHS Trust plans to market the hospital for sale openly by August if no bids are forthcoming from other NHS organisations. The hospital could face being taken over by a private healthcare service provider.

The hospital would prove to be a challenge to any new owner. It is understood that it will need an injection of £16.8 million from NHS funds just to break even in 2011-2012. This funding has not yet been secured either.

The Department of Health has been supporting the trust and has injected £13.3 million into it over the past four years. About £10.7 million has yet to be repaid.

Plans have been outlined which will see 26 to 40 per cent of the hospital’s activity cut over the next five years. It has been generating less than the average income for an NHS hospital trust.

Ron Calvert, the chief executive of the trust said, “Clearly something has to change because we are not operating at a scale that means we can continue as we are.”

Private hospital group Circle Healthcare is presently in the process of taking over an NHS hospital in Cambridgeshire, and said it would “love” to operate the trust.

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