Monitor has opened an investigation on behalf of patients into the financial sustainability of Southend University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.
The health regulator is concerned by the deterioration in Southend’s finances after the trust recorded a larger deficit (£9.8 million) for 2014/15 than planned (£7.8 million). Monitor is also worried that the trust does not have a realistic plan to recover from this situation.
Monitor’s investigation will look into the state of Southend’s finances, assess the strength of the trust’s financial management, and explore ways of improving its sustainability on behalf of patients across the region.
The investigation will also examine how the trust is working with other local health and care organisations to respond to the financial challenges it faces.
Katherine Cawley, Regional Director at Monitor, said:
People are relying on Southend to provide them with quality healthcare now and in the future, and we are concerned that this may be at risk because of the trust’s poor financial performance.
We have launched this investigation to find out more about the financial situation at the trust and to establish what can be done to improve things.
Monitor will announce the outcome of its investigation in due course.