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Chair steps down after ten-year tenure

We are bidding farewell to our current chair Roger Quince, after his successful ten-year tenure comes to an end on 31 December 2017.

The chair is responsible for leading the Board, Council of Governors, and representing the interests of patients and the organisation locally, regionally and nationally.

Roger has led the busy hospital through many changes whilst in office, including negotiating and gaining Foundation Trust status in 2011, allowing the hospital more local freedom and control. More recently he has been a driving force in supporting the hospital’s digital development and its Global Digital Exemplar status, and the integration of NHS community health services with the hospital as part of the new West Suffolk Alliance.

In the annual NHS staff survey results for 2016, the Trust emerged as the acute trust with the best performance engagement score throughout the whole of England. It was this year too that the Care Quality Commission gave the Trust an overall rating of ‘good’ with ‘outstanding’ care; the report was the best from all hospitals in the eastern region.

Roger Quince, who is also chair of the Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, said: “I am immensely proud of West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust and all it does for the local community.

“The NHS staff survey results and CQC rating in 2016 were a particular achievement and the culmination of a lot of hard work from all my colleagues.

“I will miss working at the Trust, and the many people I have got to know over my tenure, but there is a 10 year ‘rule’ for chairs, so I do have to step down! However, I do also feel this is the right time for change.

“Having recently completed the integration of the hospital with community services in west Suffolk, our Trust is working ever closer with GPs and social services, with the intention of offering a streamlined and joined-up service for all our patients at each stage of their healthcare. It is this new challenge which I think the next chair will really get her teeth into.”

As a tribute to Roger’s influence and dedication as chair over the last decade, the hospital named its new administration and sterile services block located at the back of the hospital site, ‘Quince House.’

Stephen Dunn, chief executive, said: “I would, on behalf of everyone at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, like to express my sincere thanks to Roger. As a chair he has gone above and beyond. We are immensely grateful for his unwavering leadership of our hospital and our people, and his true dedication to our patients and the local community. He has championed and challenged the Trust over the years, helping us to make positive changes and improvements that really put patients first. He has made a profound contribution to our community and our hospital.”

Before working at the Trust Roger set up a public policy consultancy, advising governments in the UK and overseas in the field of science and technology, and was an executive director of a large property development and investment company.

Sheila Childerhouse has been appointed as new chair when Roger’s term ends, and hopes to take up the role in January 2018. Sheila has vast experience in both the public and voluntary sector. Having served on various local and regional health bodies since 1984 in non-executive and chair roles, most recently at the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) and Anglian Community Enterprise, Sheila brings a wealth of expertise to the position.

On this appointment, Roger commented: “I truly welcome this excellent appointment. With Sheila’s wide range of NHS experience, I know that she will be exceptionally well-placed to help carry the Trust forward, and to help it meet the challenges ahead.”

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Roger Quince

Roger Quince