More trust mergers on the cards

BMJ 1996; 313 doi: (Published 28 September 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;313:773

NHS trusts are facing increasing pressures to combine and grow larger as the internal market begins to bite according to the director of the NHS Trust Federation, Ross Tristem. Mr Tristem predicts that many more mergers are on the cards following the recent announcement that Anglian Harbours NHS Trust faces bankruptcy after its two main purchasers announced that they were switching their contracts to neighbouring units next August.

Suffolk and East Norfolk health authorities quote two main reasons for moving their money elsewhere. Firstly, Anglian Harbour's management costs were too high and, secondly, it was unable to recruit senior doctors and nurses. Both reasons show that Anglian Harbours was the victim of its small size.

Its demise caught the headlines because it …

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