Earlier this week it was reported moves were thought to be taking place to create one chief executive for North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust and South Tees Hospitals NHS Trust.
Upon hearing the merger rumours, Hartlepool Borough Council leader Shane Moore, with the support of Independent and Conservative coalition colleagues, demanded an urgent meeting with trust officials to clarify their position.
Following that meeting on Wednesday, Cllr Moore said, while they have now “established the facts behind the rumours”, he remains firmly against any merger.
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He said: “Nothing I heard [at the meeting] has convinced me that a push to appoint a joint chief executive to oversee both trusts will have anything other than a detrimental impact on the quality of service provided for the people served by North Tees and Hartlepool.,
Insisting “that this merger by back door is scrapped immediately” Cllr Moor discussed how in recent years they have worked “extremely hard” to rebuild relations with North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust.
He continued: “The plans they have to provide excellent healthcare for the people of Hartlepool moving forward is not something we want to jeopardise at such a crucial stage.”
A statement on behalf of both trusts reiterated they must commit “wholeheartedly to transparent collaboration” after huge NHS challenges in recent years.
But it did not make any further comment on the merger claims.