St George’s Healthcare NHS Trust submitted a bid for a potential merger with St Helier Hospital in November 2011.

The board is clear that a merger between St George’s Healthcare and St Helier would be an excellent strategic opportunity, with the potential to bring significant improvements to the care of patients across southwest London and beyond.

After careful consideration the board has reached the conclusion that the current terms of the merger prevent us from proceeding further at this time.

The level of financial challenge facing hospitals in south west London, combined with the inability to pre-empt the outcome of a public consultation around the Better Services Better Value (BSBV) review, means this is not the right time for us to progress with the transaction.

We want to continue to build on the existing links that are in place for clinical services. We have identified a number of the potential benefits to patients that would occur from an acquisition which could also be delivered if the organisations remained separate legal entities which we shall continue to pursue.

We are particularly keen to develop the clinical and academic networks that span St George’s Healthcare and St Helier, and explore opportunities to establish new networks across services, to the benefit of patients.

A key priority for the trust is to achieve Foundation Trust (FT) status by 2014, and we will focus our efforts on achieving this. The board feels strongly that achieving FT status will strengthen the opportunities for St. George’s Healthcare and St Helier to work together in the future.

Notes to editors

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