22 June 2012
Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office, today
visited frontline staff who are transforming services at
Hinchingbrooke Hospital. In February, Circle, a mutual
joint venture which is 49% employee owned, became the first
company to take over management of an NHS hospital and has
since delivered significant improvements since the move in
The Minister saw first-hand how Circle, a 'John Lewis
style' mutual joint venture, is transforming Hinchingbrooke
Hospital. Circle is reporting significant improvements in
standards since its takeover.
Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office, said:
This Government believes that mutual joint ventures can
deliver public services more efficiently and more
effectively. When staff are given the power to do their
jobs in the way they know best standards can be improved as
there's a collective determination to improve things.
"We are watching with close interest as Circle continue
their pioneering transformation of this hospital.
Ali Parsa, Chief Executive of Circle, said:
Hinchingbrooke Hospital was projected to make big losses
and faced closure. Instead, by putting a partnership of
healthcare professionals in charge, it is being transformed
into one of the best district general hospitals in the
"Since the takeover, we have transferred power to those
closest to patients, and promoted 17 doctors to leadership
roles so that clinicians now make up over 80% of the
hospital board. Our model liberates the doctors and nurses
at Hinchingbrooke to deliver the best services for the
patients which they know best."
Notes to editors
Across the country, mutuals already deliver about £1
billion of health services. The business models they choose
vary greatly but all give employees a meaningful say in how
things are run.
1.About £1 billion of health services are provided by
mutuals. Evidence suggests that employee ownership can
boost productivity by up to 19%. John Lewis, one of
Britain's best known mutuals, continually tops customer
satisfaction polls and has half the average staff turnover
and sickness absence of the retail sector. The Government
is supporting public servants who want to form mutuals with
a £10million Mutuals Support Programme and Mutuals
Information Service htttp://mutuals.cabinetoffice.gov.uk
and hotline 0845 5390543.
2.Circle is a member of the Government's Mutual Pathfinder
programme. These Pathfinders are trailblazers for the rest
of the public sector - helping Government establish, by
learning from the front line, what type of support and
structures will best enable the development of employee-led
mutuals on an ongoing basis.
3.All Hinchingbrooke staff will be awarded staff shares in
Circle later this year.